COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - After 23 years, Catholic Charities of Central Colorado will no longer offer English as a second language and citizenship classes.
Catholic Charities of Central Colorado says they made this decision for many reasons, one is they believe other ESL programs might be serving the need in a better fashion.
Learning a new language can be difficult, but for years the non-profit organization played a huge role in helping people learn the English language.
Lorri Orwig with Catholic Charities of Colorado says the last five years its been slow for them!
"When we started in 1999 with the ESL program there were very few programs in our community to meet that need so we stepped in, we took it on, it was a small program that continued to grow over the years, and in the last 23 years but it's kind of plateau," said Orwig.
Just last year only about 190 students graduated from their program which led them to drop the programs.
"As I was having conversations with other ESL programs in the community, specifically D11, they have capacity for hundreds and hundreds of people to attend those classes, so while ours has grown it would never meet the same level as some of these bigger programs," added Orwig.
Though traffic for these specific programs has been slow for this organization- the demand is still high across the community.
"There is absolutely still in need for ESL classes in our community, we know the population still continues to grow we have a great partnership with our military installations, we have a lot of folks that are coming over as spouses from other countries who need classes," said Orwig.
As they drop the programs they'll look to continue to focus on other needs like food, healthcare, and immigration programs.
In the past 12 months, the organization served a total of 580 clients in its family immigration services program.
Catholic Charities of Central Colorado also says the lack of funding was a small part of their decision to end the programs.
They look to create awareness of other ESL programs in the community.