Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Rosemary Loehr, French major, enjoys service-learning experience

Rosemary Loehr
Rosemary Loehr, William Jewell College French major, engaged in a service-learning experience in which she engaged her language skills (learning) to help others (service). Here is an account of her experience in her own words:

This summer I am working at a Refugee Resettlement and lately I have been working with some French speaking clients from the Central Africain Republic! Aside from being able to practice my French, I also gave two of the clients some of my extra French novels. For one of the clients, Valerie, French is his first language so he can speak, write, and read it fluently.  When I gave him my extra copy of L'enfant noir he became very excited and told me that he had read it a long time ago when he was school and he used to own a copy before he had to flee his country.

Valerie came to the U.S. alone because the rest of his family had been killed in CAR. He was living with a roommate (also from the CAR who spoke some French), however the roommate died earlier this week and so now he is by himself. I could tell that it meant so much for him to be able to have something to get his mind off of the recent death of his friend but also to have a connection with his home and his former life. It was really great to be able to share the book with him and be able to discuss what it means to him.

It is hard to speak French with the majority of our clients because their accents are very thick and their pronunciation is very different! So it is nice to have a client who I can understand and who can help me when I'm trying to speak with him! It's definitely really good practice, haha!

Well, I just wanted to share this story with you about my French connection I have been able to make right here in Kansas City.

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