Pat Gerke: Language Program Director –
Louise Ochoa: Language Program Coordinator –

Mission Statement: 

To promote communication within the parish with an emphasis on fostering friendships through language learning.


Who are the Tutors?
Tutors are Sacred Heart parishioners from all walks of life who have a desire to assist those in need right here at Sacred Heart.  No professional teaching experience is necessary, just a desire to help and the willingness to invest a couple of hours every week to teach someone to understand, speak, read and write in English.  Several sessions of tutoring training are provided prior to the learner assignments.  Each tutor aids one learner in one 90 minute session per week.  Some tutors provide transportation for their learner as well.

Tutor Training Sessions are held in September and February in conjunction with the Literacy Action Corps.

Who are the Learners?
Each learner is an adult immigrant or refugee who needs help learning to understand, speak, read and write in English.  As a tutorial program we address the needs of immigrants to improve their English language skills and give support to refugees and Hispanic immigrants enrolled in ESL programs in Columbia.  Currently, some learners are war refugees from countries of west-central Africa and others are Spanish speakers who have immigrated to the US from Mexico and Central and South America.  We hope to expand our services this year to people from more countries.

Please contact us if you or someone you know, would like to sign up for English Language tutoring.

Visit the Language program website at:


language program pic