The HomeworkHub Tutoring Team © Photo Courtesy of HomeworkHub
By Allie Murray
Noticing the lack of academic support for younger students adjusting to online schooling, a group of students in Waterloo joined forces to create HomeworkHub Tutoring—a non-profit organization dedicated to providing free, accessible and quality education to all students. The group now extends across Canada, the U.S., China, India, and around the world.
The organization pairs high school or university tutors with elementary students for one-on-one, virtual, eight-week tutoring sessions in all school subjects. Students can register for up to three subjects at a time to get the help they need.
“HomeworkHub Tutoring started last year in February,” founder and president Paris Cai explained. “During the pandemic, a group of friends and I realized that there was a lack of academic support going around for younger students struggling to adjust to the online learning format and a lack of volunteering opportunities for older students to engage with their community, so we decided to tackle both issues at once and created HomeworkHub.”
The team works to support students in need of academic support not only in Waterloo, but across Canada, the U.S., China, Kenya, India, and now, Ukraine.
Amid the Russian invasion in Ukraine, hundreds of thousands of students have been displaced from their homes, schools, and forced to put their education on hold.
“HomeworkHub has a pretty sizeable Ukrainian community and we’ve utilized our own members as well as outside institutions such as various church and newcomer support groups to reach and facilitate tutoring for Ukrainian students currently caught up in war,” Cai said.
Cai shared that offering these services has been a slow and steady process, but one that has gained a lot of momentum since they’ve begun offering their services to Ukrainian students. They have a quality assurance team hosting English Second Language (ESL) tutoring training sessions, and they have been extra diligent with tutor requirements when onboarding new volunteers.
“Currently, we have many students residing in and around Ukraine, and it’s honestly really inspiring to see them continue to pursue and better their education even when under such stressful circumstances,” Cai said. “Some of our students have to visit bomb shelters multiple times a week and it’s really amazing that they can still make time to study with our tutors. For now, we welcome all students affected by the war and we hope to start working with Ukrainian newcomers in Canada a little later on.”
There are roughly 1,000 students using the tutoring services offered by HomeworkHub, and approximately 60 of them are students from Ukraine.
To help make a difference, Cai shared that they are always looking for more tutors to join their team. As they expand their efforts to reach more students worldwide, they have students on their waiting list that they would love to help—and they need more tutors to support students in need.