Shamsun was introduced to the Renewal Programme in 2018 by her neighbour, a fellow ESOL learner. She enrolled in the Level One Training and Education programme two years ago and, having grown her skills, her teachers encouraged her to volunteer.

My name is Shamsun, I live in Manor Park. I came here from the Netherlands three years ago and I am Asian Bangladeshi, but my nationality is Dutch; I can speak Dutch and lived in the Netherlands for 17 years. I really love to travel and am interested in learning languages. 

I heard about the Renewal Programme in 2018, through my neighbour, as she was already enrolled in the Training & Education project. I have been learning English through the project for the last two years and now my skills have developed, my teachers encouraged me to volunteer. 

I feel like I've found my place through the Renewal Programme.

Having been a befriending volunteer in the Netherlands before I moved to London, I connected to the Connect Newham service and signed up to become a Telephone Befriending Volunteer. I am really looking forward to speaking and listening to the people I get matched with through the service as I feel like it will help me develop, and practise, my English skills and aid me in learning about people.

The Renewal Programme means a lot to me; it's a helpful place for people wanting to learn English, as well as getting support around with lots of different things.