Marriage can be challenging under the best of circumstances, but when spouses speak different languages, those challenges are compounded.
The Clisantes were struggling to communicate when they came to us for help. He was Dominican and spoke only Spanish, she was born in the USA and spoke only English.
While dating they were limited to what they could say using Google Translate on their phones. Once they got married there were tensions and conflicts as the language barrier compounded their cultural differences. Then they found help and new hope at Roosevelt Park Ministries (RPM). He enrolled in our ESL classes and she started taking beginner Spanish. I called and talked to Amber recently and she was candid about their struggles. She was also so grateful for RPM because over the past months they’ve developed their own shared language, mixing both English and Spanish that has not only improved their ability to communicate, but has drawn them closer together as a couple. Francisco’s dedication is admirable – two nights a week he comes directly from work to our offices to learn English. He has also attended our financial literacy workshops.
The Clisantes, like dozens of other families we serve, are fiercely committed to better their own lives and provide a brighter future for their families. At RPM we’re honored to work with them. As their English literacy grows, so does their confidence, and with it a growing optimism about their life and future. Their hard work and positive attitudes are helping make Roosevelt Park a strong and vibrant neighborhood.
Submitted by Joel Groat, Roosevelt Park Ministries
Diaconal Ministry Report