Volunteer Tutors

Volunteer Adult Literacy Tutors make a difference in the lives of students every day!

Portland Literacy Council is proud to support Volunteer Adult Literacy Tutors and the students and programs they serve in the Portland-metro area.

SAVE THE DATE:  PLC’s Volunteer Literacy Tutor Conference will be held on March 10, 2018.  Watch this space for updates.

The following non-profit agencies are seeking volunteer tutors to work with adult students. Tutors can choose to work one-to-one, with a small group, or as a program assistant. Use this Tutor Intake Form to clarify your interests and availability for volunteering as a tutor.  To learn more about becoming a volunteer tutor for one of these agencies, please contact them directly.


Lutheran Community Services Northwest Citizenship & ESL Program,  605 SE Cesar Chavez Blvd. Portland,
Dec 2017 – March 2018, Tues, 6:00-8:45pm, Annie Karas – aruonavaarakaras@lcsnw.org (email best), 503-731-9585

Multnomah County Library
Adult Literacy Tutoring, Citizenship Classes and Opportunities for English Language Learners, Lisa Regimbal, Adult Literacy Coordinator, 503-577-9984, lisar@multcolib.org, www.multcolib.org

Portland Community College, Cascade Campus  – Volunteer Literacy Tutor Program
One-to-one and small-group tutoring. ABE/GED and ESOL.
Jennifer Ruden, Coordinator, 971-722-5219, jennifer.ruden@pcc.edu

Portland Community College, SE Center – Volunteer Literacy Tutor Program
One-to-one and small-group tutoring. ABE/GED and ESOL.
Gale Czerski, Coordinator, 971-722-6075, gale.czerski15@pcc.edu

Portland Community College, Sylvania Campus – Volunteer Literacy Tutor Program
One-to-one and small-group tutoring. ABE/GED, ESL, and possibly Citizenship.  Mark W. Palmer, Coordinator, 971-722-4903, mark.palmer2@pcc.edu

SOAR Immigration Legal Services – A Program of Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon
7931 NE Halsey St., Ste. 302, Portland
Free citizenship preparation for legal permanent residents.
One-to-one and small group tutoring. www.soarlegal.org
Katherine Anderson, Coordinator, 503-384-2482, ext. 113, kanderson@emoregon.org


Clackamas Community College (Oregon City Campus and Harmony Campus)
Michelle Culley, Volunteer Literacy Tutor Coordinator, 503-594-3624, michellec@clackamas.edu

Learn more about becoming a volunteer tutor by visiting the Tutor Pages of the Volunteer Literacy Tutoring Program at PCC.


Beaverton Literacy Council (Beaverton)
Beaverton Community Center, Bethel Congregational United Church of Christ, and other locations.
Multi-level ESL tutoring, Citizenship tutoring, and Book Group. For class schedules see www.beavertonliteracy.org.  503-520-8764.

Centro Cultural (Cornelius)
1110 N Adair St., Cornelius
ESL, Adult Basic Education, INEA, GED classes, and citizenship classes for Spanish-speakers, year-round. Jessica Hanson, ESL Coordinator, 503-359-0446, jhanson@centrocultural.org; Dagoberto Cerrud, ABE & GED Coordinator, 503-359-0446 x35, dcerrud@centrocultural.org

New Creation Chinese Church
5575 SW Erickson Ave. Beaverton, OR, 97005
Multi-level ESL classes, free, with childcare. Contact Tom at tomdavidtang@gmail.com or 503-395-0088. Classes begin September 12, Tuesday and Thursday mornings, 10:00-11:30 am weekly.

PCC – Rock Creek Campus, Volunteer Literacy Tutoring Program
Serving Beaverton and Aloha. ESL classes, One-to-one and small group tutoring. Edit McDonald, Coordinator, 971-722-2578, emcdonal@pcc.edu

St. Anthony Catholic Church
9905 SW McKenzie, Tigard
Multilevel ESL classes, free, no childcare. Tues and Thurs eves, 10-week terms. Allen Robinson, 503-675-3583, esol.allen@gmail.com

Tigard Methodist Church
9845 SW Walnut Place, Tigard; behind Jiffy Lube on Pacific Highway.
Free ESL classes, 3 levels, open-entry, 10-week terms. Free childcare. Rosemary Carlsen, 503-635-6505, info@tigardumc.com

Tigard Senior Center
8815 SW O’Mara St, Tigard.
ESOL Classes, 4 levels.  Level 4 ESL volunteer teacher and a general level 1-4 substitute needed.  If interested, please contact Cindy Thomson, 503-413-9334, cindymarieis@gmail.com

Tualatin Public Library
18878 SW Martinazzi Avenue, Tualatin.
ESOL; 1-to-1 with library patrons, 2 hours per week for at least 3 months. Lauren Furnish, Community Librarian, 503-691-3077, lfurnish@ci.tualatin.or.us

A Handbook for Tutors Working with Adult ESOL Literacy Learners – created by Margi Felix-Lund, this is a comprehensive guide for volunteer tutors.

English Listening Language Lab Online – A resource for improving English listening and speaking skills.

Portland ESL Network Website/Wiki – an online resource that includes an ESL class map and ESL resource materials for students and tutors.

Free ESL Flashcards – A resource for ESL learning materials.

GED.com – The official site for the GED test.

Learn Free.Org – A resource for basic learning and education.

LiveMocha – A resource for improving English skills.

Making It Real: Teaching Pre-Literate Adult Refugee Students – Strategies for teaching pre-literate refugees in a multi-level ESL class

Open Educational Resources – High quality, free and low-cost educational materials.

Tutor Help Center – A resource for tutoring materials and ideas.

USA Learns – A resource for basic learning and education.

These ESOL packets were compiled by Adult Basic Skills department and Volunteer Literacy Program Coordinators at Portland Community College. The ESOL packets were made possible with the permissions of Pro Lingua Associates and New Readers Press. They are made available to PLC courtesy of the Oregon Literacy, Inc. website.


What does a volunteer tutor do?

Depending on the literacy program you choose, you might work one-to-one with a student, work with a small group, or work as a classroom aide

Whom would I tutor?

You would work with adult learners:  immigrants, refugees, and native English speakers with less than 8th-grade literacy skills.

See the list of Portland-area programs below that use volunteer tutors.

What does it take to be a successful tutor? What is the time commitment?

Can you answer Yes to the following questions?

  • Can you commit to a two-day workshop held on consecutive Saturdays from 9 am to 4 pm?
  • Can you volunteer 2 to 4 hours per week for 6 months?
  • Would you describe yourself as flexible, patient, and dedicated?
  • Do you have a sense of humor?

If you answered Yes to all of these questions, you are a good volunteer tutor candidate, and we’d like you on our team.

If you feel that volunteer tutoring isn’t the right fit for you, and you still want to volunteer your time, let us know. Tutoring programs may need assistance with clerical tasks, computer work, or other functions.

Contact: info@portlandliteracy.org

Learn to be a Volunteer Literacy Tutor

Registration is FULL for the Winter Tutor Training Workshop to be held January 20 and 27, 2018 at the PCC Cascade Campus.

Please email registrar@portlandliteracy.org if you would like to be placed on a waiting list.

PLC’s Tutor Training is a two-day workshop — two Saturdays in a row. Both days are required to complete the workshop. Registration closes when we have reached the maximum attendance, or at midnight the Thursday before each session, whichever occurs first.

2017-18 Tutor Training Schedule



Contact registrar@portlandliteracy.org

Workshop Attendance

If you register for tutor training, we hold a spot for you and look forward to your volunteer service. We do understand that two Saturdays in a row is a significant commitment.

If you are unable to attend training, you will need to notify us of your absence so that we can serve others on the waiting list.

  • Before 5pm on the Thursday before the training, email the Portland Literacy Council registrar: registrar@portlandliteracy.org.
  • Any time on the Friday before the training, or before 9 am on the Saturday of the training, leave a voice mail at (503) 217-4041. Messages will be retrieved by Saturday morning.

We cannot provide refunds for missed training sessions.  If you wish to attend another session/day, a new registration and payment are required.  There will be no payment carry-over.

Workshop Fees

Local Program Volunteer – $30
Non-local Program Volunteer – $50

Payment is due upon registration. Pay online when registering or send a check payable to Portland Literacy Council.