The mission and support for volunteers makes this a very special organization. Despite coming out of retirement, I blocked off my volunteer time for experience corps, and consider it untouchable, despite my employer wanting more of my time.
I have the impression that I'm accomplishing some very important contributions to a needy population of young students, and that my efforts will contribute significantly to their future development.
I have been volunteering as a tutor/mentor for Experience Corps Bay Area since I retired in 2007. I am not a school teacher, but if you can read and do simple math, you can make a tremendous difference in the life of a young elementary school student. Experience Corps coordinates everything from your training to the student assignment(s). You choose the days and the hours you would like to volunteer. This is a wonderful program, very supportive, with continued training and team meetings throughout the year. I am so happy that I joined Experience Corps Bay Area!
I am an Experience Corps Bay Area volunteer. After working for 34 years in the Computer Software development field, when I retired I really wanted to work with kids, preferably tutoring, one-on-one. Experience Corps was a perfect fit! They provided training, literature, suggestions for games, for creating visual aids, and a structure. Experience Corps Bay Area connects retired seniors with elementary schools in Oakland where the need is the greatest. Their objective is to keep us active and involved in the community while at the same time, help the youth of Oakland to succeed educationally. I have made new friends from age 8 to 88. I have been volunteering since 2007, and I can actually see that I have made a difference in the lives of my students, some who have already started high school.
Experience Corps gives volunteers the tools they need to address one of our most pressing problems: giving all our community's children a high-quality education. As a volunteer myself, I'm part of a team with great adults (staff and volunteers) and charming kids. I work at Sankofa, an Oakland school community that is giving its all under difficult circumstances. If I can help, even a little, it feels terrific!
Enthusiastic staff, offers many training opportunities and social gatherings for volunteers, professionally managed.
A few of the mandatory trainings were not very helpful but still a good idea
grateful to have a place to share experience strength and hope to the future that is so bombarded with distractions. as a volunteer i get the opportunity of making an impact on the real sense of self definition for the children with the hope of them being able to see through reading many possibilities of what seemed impossible.
I have volunteered with Experience Corps for 3 years now. After retiring as a physician, I wanted to find opportunities to continue to help my community. Assisting children to improve their reading seemed like a very good method for working on that goal, and I have engaged in that activity 15-20 hours per week in an elementary school in Oakland, California.
It is very clear that such efforts yield real results in reading improvement. For example, I can begin working as a one-on-one tutor with a second grader in September. At that time, his or her reading performance might be in the 5th or 10th percentile. At the end of the school year, reading level is usually close to the 50th percentile! This doesn't solve all of the problems for these children, but being able to read at grade level proficiency should certainly be an important step up.
Our organization, Experience Corps, makes this experience possible for over 60 volunteers in Oakland. The current structure of our city schools simply doesn't allow for random, individual volunteers to work effectively with any school. Experience Corps meets with and establishes ground rules for volunteer activity in any school. Security questions and background checks are handled by Experience Corps, and that assurance is given to the school. Advance arrangements are made with teachers. In addition, volunteers are periodically gathered together to discuss policy, future activities, and ongoing inservice education is provided as well.
Experience Corps is providing a wonderful service, and they get my highest rating!
This is my fourth year as an Experience Corps volunteer. As a retired person from a "helping" profession I had a need to offer something of myself to my community. Experience Corps has certainly satisfied that need. Experience Corps has provided me with superior training and has responded whenever I needed their support. I was fortunate enough, last year, to have the 2nd grade teacher whose children I tutored, thank me for for their improvement in literacy which she said was was verified by their test scores. Actually, my thanks comes from the fulfilling feeling I have as I am leaving school on the days I tutor. So, this wonderful organization can be credited with helping the young and the "old."
I feel so fulfilled when working as a volunteer in Experience Corps Bay Area's K-3 Literacy Program in San Francisco. Tutoring "one-on-one" in two third grade classes each week has been challenging and rewarding. We receive exceptional training as volunteers and learn how to best work with English Language Learners and others who need extra help to read fluently and with understanding. As an older adult volunteer, I have been embraced by the school community and the Experience Corps staff and feel that I am making a difference through this wonderful program.
Experience Corps is a wonderful organization and I am very pleased to be a volunteer with them. The training is very professional and a great help to me as I work with first and second grade children. My association with them is a real gift to me.
In my involvement with Experience Corps - Bay Area, I have been impressed time and time again. I have seen young students drastically improve their literacy skills, and better yet...they were excited to learn more. I have seen these older adults inspire these young children to succeed in school and become invested in their own futures. It has been heart warming to see senior citizens light up and thrive in their involvement. I have seen older adults at the risk of isolation come together to socialize and network over a shared passion for education. I heard a stories from volunteers about finding a new purpose in life when they thought they had surpassed the feeling of inspiration, and stories of finding time and discovering new passions in retirement. With this enthusiasm, Experience Corps volunteers not only witness academic growth, but a child who is excited to grow older and a child who admires their life-learned wisdom. Preconceived notions and misconceptions are reconsidered. And along side these blossoming students and seniors with rejuvenated quality of life, are the communities that flourish as a result of a more educated future citizenship and tangible proof of a community who cares about it's children.
Being an Experience Corps volunteer has been one of the most rewarding experiences for me since I retired. Whether working one-on-one or with an entire class, the interaction with both the students and teachers has been very gratifying. The Experience Corps staff provides volunteers with practical tools to be effective tutors, as well as ongoing support if problems arise. I commend the organization for the excellent work they are doing.
It is an honor to be a volunteer with Experience Corps. This is my second year serving. Helping children in grades K-3rd with their literacy development is quite satisfying. The training and support provided are useful and appreciative. The expression of a child's face when they learn something is such a joy to "Experience"!
Experience Corp does a great job at not only placing their volunteers but also provides much needed ongoing support in the way of, training, team meetings, newsletters, online instructional videos, and close contact. It's nice to know that they invest in their volunteers and see us as such a valuable resource.
Being an Experience Corps Volunteer is an immensely rewarding experience for me personally and I believe for the first grade students I work with one-on-one. Experience Corps provides its tutors with literacy training and tools to be effective and creative in building a relationship with each child and addressing their particular literacy needs. Additionally, working with the classroom teacher has given me an opportunity to see first hand--and to appreciate--great teaching. Finally, the tutoring team established at my school and throughout our city provides an opportunity for me to meet and exchange ideas with other seniors who share a common concern for the future of our community and its youth - wonderful people I would not otherwise know but for Experience Corps.
Experience Corps Bay Area continually impresses me. The concept of pairing two generations to share their time, energy and ways they see the world is one that's very close to my heart. Seeing this come to life through the work at Experience Corps has been a wonderful thing to be part of. The team behind the work are talented, hard-working and very driven to care for the students, Experience Corps tutors and schools that they work with. And you can see this come through in the positive impact they make in the communities they work in.
Experience Corps Bay Area is a wonderful program that places older adults in Bay Area public schools to provide tutoring and mentoring to children in kindergarten through 3rd grade. As a volunteer I provide weekly support to students in first grade classrooms with a focus on reading skills. It is extremely rewarding to witness how a little extra one-on-one tutoring helps children gain confidence and improve skills. ECBA truly values its volunteers and provides excellent training and support.
Experience Corps is a great program! I have been an AmeriCorps VISTA with this program for almost a year and have seen what a strong, positive impact Experience Corps makes in the lives of the students and our members.