Volunteer of the Month: Nestor Santos

NestorHe takes pride in knowing his dedication is having a real impact on a newcomer’s life and that’s why Nestor Santos is the Immigrant Centre’s volunteer of the month for April.

Nestor started volunteering a few hours every week at the centre last July helping a newcomer from Spain learn English.

A bond between the two quickly formed.

Nestor remembers going through a similar struggle as his client. He came to Canada from El Salvador when he was just eight-years-old.

“It was up and downs. In a way I recalled how my parents went through it and I just wanted him to know that it does get better,” Santos says.

The newcomer Nestor is working with is from Spain, but the two resisted the urge to speak Spanish.

“We made a rule since Day 1 that we wouldn’t talk in Spanish because that would not help him in any way,” Nestor says with a laugh.

Nestor helps his client with homework and keeps in touch with him over email when the two aren’t together.

At first, it was all about the little things.

“It helps when you come here to have that sort of connection with someone that you can ask how to order food or something because it’s hard,” Nestor says

Nestor says the experience has been rewarding. “You gain a friendship out of it.”

“It is definitely worth the time.”