For those in our community who haven’t learned to speak English, Lake Worth West Resident Planning Group offers a program to study the language – as well as learn about nutrition and wellness – all at the same time.

Thanks to Florida Blue and the Florida Literacy Coalition, we were recently awarded a $5,000 grant to provide Healthy ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) to our residents and members for another year. Our Executive Director Rhonda Rogers was recently presented with the check at the 34th Annual Florida Literacy Conference.

This isn’t a standard ESOL program. As participants learn basic and advanced components of the English language, they also learn about healthy eating and lifestyles. The goal is for students to use the information they learn in the classroom and apply it in a larger context.

Our 25 students also took part in a “project-based” learning initiative. This year, the topic was “legal and illegal drugs – let’s talk about them.” Instructor Louise Gourd worked with our students to understand the nation’s drug abuse epidemic, particularly how people are getting addicted and dying from opioid prescriptions.

In addition, our students went on field trips to a grocery store and dental office and attended our community’s annual Community Health Fair.

In all, the 16-week class, from January to April, got students to understand the challenges of learning English but also the challenges of living in the U.S.

“The students were so enthusiastic. They took on many challenges and they did a great job,” Louise said. “This program is indeed unique.”

To learn more about our ESOL program call us 561-649-9600.