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Free English lessons start next week for Ukrainian refugees in Maple Ridge

Classes start Monday, Aug. 8
Ksenia Beliaeva, left, and Katerina Pogrebinsky, will be holding free English language lessons for Ukrainian refugees. (Special to The News)

A university instructor experienced in teaching Ukrainians English in Ukraine, is now helping out in Maple Ridge.

Katerina Pogrebinsky is offering English language lessons at two levels at three different times, mornings, evenings and Saturdays, starting Aug. 8. She will be giving the lessons with, Ksenia Beliaeva, a Ukrainian refugee herself who only moved to Maple Ridge about four weeks ago. Beliaeva is a professor from Kharkiv University and an ESL teacher.

Golden Ears United Church is providing the location.

The help to learn the language comes at no cost for Ukrainian refugees, although they have to pay a deposit, which is reimbursed when the classes are over. Pogrebinsky, with the Maple Ridge Language School, said the reason for the deposit is to keep students motivated with their courses.

The fee for the morning sessions, which go Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to noon, is $90 a week. Those lessons are for those who have no, or minimal English, and are intended to teach some basic language — fast.

The evening classes are for those who have some minimal level of English, who may already have a job during the day, and who need to improve their communication skills.

Those classes take place Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Cost is $40 a week.

There’s also a Saturday communications morning class which combines the two levels of instruction and is ideal for those with some English, but who want to improve their conversation skills. It will focus on vocabulary and dialogue needed for day-to-day affairs. Cost for that is $20 a session.

READ MORE: Ridge Meadows committee supporting refugees from Ukraine

ALSO: Ukraine refugees get donations and warm welcome from Maple Ridge

Also needed however, are volunteers to babysit the children, while the mums attend the classes.

Most of the refugees are women and children, with husbands and fathers required to stay and help fight the Russian invasion.

For those who want to be able to learn how to teach people to learn English, there’s also a Zoom lesson that will prepare people to take the Teaching of English as Foreign Language exam.

Anyone interested in taking any of the courses is asked to contact: as soon as possible.

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