Networking Opportunity • Writers and Storytellers Wanted • ESL Teachers Needed • Save the Dates


Dear <<First Name>> ,

We are excited to announce our upcoming 2015 Networking Breakfast. Join us and discover how The Gift of the Stranger can enrich and bless our lives.

  • Learn simple, kind and hospitable ways to build friendly cross-cultural relationships.
  • Network with others who serve the intercultural community.
  • Explore community agency booths and make new connections.
This event is ideal for pastors, teachers, ESL leaders and community and church volunteers. Don't miss this great event! Our keynote speaker this year is Rev. Dr. Bill Dyck from First Baptist Church. Did we mention there's breakfast?

Saturday, February 21, 2015
at Encompass Partnerships - 3851 54 Avenue NE
9:00 - 11:30 a.m.

Cost $25 per person
Early bird price $20 per person until February 17, 2015.


Tell Us Your Stories

By James Edel

Recently, I was teaching a unit on family to a beginner class (CLB 0-1, writing) and I asked my students to write down the names of their family members. We started with children and then brothers and sisters and then we got to aunts and uncles. Our record was ten brothers and 5 sisters from a South Vietnamese student—see if you can beat that! 

Then I got to thinking about generations. Matthew Chapter 1 illustrates the genealogy of Christ, which is important to Jewish and Christian cultures. I expect my Muslim students (a majority in most of my classes) have memorized the genealogies leading up to their prophet as well. Oral history is a vital part of many cultures. I asked my students to write down their father and grandfather and go as far back as they could remember. For a literacy class, this is helpful because it makes them practice sounding out the words; for a higher level, writing the whole family tree may be more appropriate. It was the Somali-Muslim lady, the lowest student in the class in her literacy skills, who was able to recite 15—yes, 15—generations of her family. Some students could do six or seven generations. I only know my father, grandfather, great-grandfather and great-great grandfather's names. I was put to shame by students whose oral culture is very strong. How many generations can you list? Are you able to tell stories from your past and your family's past?

Would you like to share your family's immigration story? Maybe it's a tale that your parents or grandparents tell best, but you can be the 'next generation' who keeps the history alive! Cooperative ESL Ministries would like to share your stories with our blog and newsletter audiences. Send your family's immigration stories to and we will select stories to publish. They may be edited for brevity.

May 2015 be a great year for you and your relationships with newcomers. May we have a lot to teach and a lot to learn from them!

Blessings, James Edel

Writers Wanted

Cooperative ESL Ministries is looking for writers in the ESL community who would like to write blog articles (600-800 words in length) for our new weekly blog. We are looking for 4-8 regular contributors who are willing to donate their time and talent. Blog articles will be published online and in our newsletter.  

Articles could be stories from your classroom, tips and tricks you've learned over the years, or things your students have taught you. Submit your ideas! Blog articles should be uplifting and offer substance to our readers. Submit your ideas to our blog editor:   


Job Posting: ESL Teachers Needed

Agape Language Centre is looking to fill several positions in their LINC and ESL programs with teachers who fit their culture. The students are adult immigrants to Canada. Classes take place Monday to Friday from 9:00 am to 11:30 am weekly, also Tuesday and Thursday evenings.

Expected start date: Immediate

Qualifications: TESL accreditation is required, experience teaching ESL, understanding of Canadian Language Benchmarks.

Teaching curriculum is based on the Canadian Language Benchmarks and focused on practical skills for living in Canada (housing, employment, etc.)

For more information, please contact Noral Woodburn at

Save These Dates!

Mark these dates on your calendar and watch our newsletter and website for more details. 

Intercultural Communication Workshop

March 14, 2015
Encompass Partnerships
3851 – 54 Ave. NE

Spring Training

April 18, 2015
Foothills Alliance Church
333 Edgepark Blvd NW


Blog coming soon!


Cooperative ESL Ministries
PO Box 65172 North Hill
Calgary, AB T2N 4T6

Add us to your address book





Directions for Immigrants - Pharmacy Examining Board Study Group

Do you know any internationally educated pharmacists who are planning to become licensed in Canada? Spaces are available in this FREE Pharmacy Examining Board of Canada Evaluating Exam study group.

February 4 - June 24, 2015
9:00 am - 1:00 pm or 403.770.5155

Making Changes Employment and Life Skills Program for Immigrant Women

The Program is an excellent pre-employment orientation that is very beneficial for immigrant women who wish to plan and prepare for their future in Canada.  They learn how to establish more meaningful lives in their new society by introducing career management skills including research skills, networking, job search strategies and assertiveness training. Participants are helped to increase their confidence, recognize their skills and to develop a plan for their future.
We meet one day a week for seven weeks to focus on goal setting and skill identification, career and community information sources, assertive communication skills, interview skills, job search and Canadian workplace culture.  This program is really helpful for immigrant women - they love the opportunity to increase their confidence and make connections as they re-discover their skills and develop a plan to reach their goals in Canada.
It is best if the women have completed at least LINC 3.

The Program is FREE including bus tickets. Register for free childcare.
Immigrant Services Calgary
12th floor, 910 – 7 Avenue SW
Wednesdays, February 11 - March 25

(every Wednesday for 7 weeks)
9:30 am – 3:30 pm (Bring your lunch)

For further information or to register, contact Elaine at 403-262-5776
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