I have been volunteering with the Afghan Wellness Group for the past couple of months. The group meets for about two hours every other week with the purposes of learning from one another and building community. With the help of volunteers, childcare is provided, making the meetings an excellent opportunity for adult time. Goals are established based on the interests of the group. 

One of the goals of the Afghan Wellness Group is English language learning. To facilitate this goal, our most recent meeting took place at the Glen Allen library. Those who attended the group signed up for their own library card if they did not already have one. In addition to receiving a card, they learned about library resources, one being free access to the Rosetta Stone app, which all participants downloaded. At the end of our time together, one of the women expressed that as a busy mother, the app is a realistic tool to help her practice English because it’s easily accessible on her phone and can be used in short intervals throughout the day. 

 I found our meeting at the library to be empowering, as the women came away with access to a wonderful community resource and an English language tool that they can use independently and often. While the Afghan Wellness Group is relatively new, the mutual respect and appreciation established among group participants and volunteers has set a wonderful tone. I believe the group will continue to grow and thrive with each meeting!

—Emily, a ReEstablish Richmond volunteer