Save Emily's Coffee!
The Downtown Denver Expeditionary School (DDES) will present their learning in cooperation with Emily's Coffee Shop on Wednesday, May 31 from 10:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. to help raise awareness and funds to support the continuation of the instructional coffee shop for refugees and immigrants.
The 4th graders have been working for the past eight weeks to understand the refugee experience through fiction and nonfiction texts, and through interviews with refugees from Emily Griffith Technical College (EGTC). Fourth grade student Joziah Zubia states, "I felt instantly comfortable talking to them and learning from their stories. We asked questions about their childhood and advice they may have for other refugees. The woman I was speaking with was the only woman out of her entire family to come to America. It made me sad and I realized I am blessed to live in a country without big wars. It made me feel like we should really care more about each other."
Through the interview process, students in all three 4th grade classes learned that the future of the instructional coffee shop was uncertain and asked EGTC faculty how they could help. Current funding for the training program ends on June 30, but EGTC aims to continue to offer high quality instruction and workforce development to students long after that date. Zubia and the other 4th grade students believe passionately about the program. Zubia says, "I think the coffee shop is so important because it is hard to get a job in America and this is a place where refugees feel welcome and can get experience."
The DDES community is rallying around supporting the valuable resource and community space that Emily's Coffee provides. From the perspective of DDES interim Executive Director Letia Frandina, "The coffee shop is not just in the same building as our school, it is an integral pillar of our community. Not only do our families frequent the coffee shop, the inclusive hands-on community learning environment of 1860 Lincoln from kinder to college is central to our vision at DDES."
Emily's Coffee Training Program is a program within the Language Learning Center (LLC) at EGTC. The LLC is the oldest and largest English Language Acquisition (ELA) program in Colorado, annually helping close to 1,500 students from 94 countries and 71 language backgrounds. Emily's Coffee has offered job readiness and English language training for students at EGTC for more than five years. Refugees and immigrants get real work experience while bolstering their confidence in the English language by working in authentic environments at school and in the community.
What: Fourth grade students at DDES will present their knowledge on the stories of refugees while advocating to save the coffee shop. The link to donate to the instructional programming at the coffee shop is egfoundation.org/coffeeshop.
Who: DDES is a Denver Public School charter that opened in 2013. Founded by parents, community members and business leaders seeking a high-performing EL Education (formerly Expeditionary Learning) school, DDES serves a diverse range of families who live or work in the city center. EL’s approach to teaching and learning makes subjects come alive for students by connecting learning to real-world issues and needs. The EL model provides academically rigorous learning expeditions, case studies, projects, fieldwork, and service learning projects to children of all backgrounds and ability levels. DDES currently serves 400 families and growing.
Where: Emily's Coffee Shop, the lobby of the Emily Griffith Campus at 1860 Lincoln St., Denver.
When: Wednesday, May 31 from 10:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m.
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