Stichting English Academy for Newcomers (EAN) is a young NGO, based in Utrecht and supported by the Applied Linguistics team at Utrecht University.
Our friendly, multicultural team of volunteers is on a mission to increase the prospects of newcomers with a refugee background in the education system and the job market. Economic independence and full participation in society will improve their wellbeing — as well as the social fabric overall.
Right now, many newcomers are overqualified for the jobs they’re currently working. That’s why we offer a range of social activities, affordable education and mentorship programmes designed to unleash their full potential.
EAN began as a small volunteer initiative in the winter of 2016. EAN’s founder, Phillip Wozny, was volunteering with Welkome en Utrecht at the Joseph Haydnlaan Asylum Seeker Center. With Welkome en Utrecht, Phillip helped newcomers engage in fun, educational activities. There was a curious absence of English language education. As a former English teacher himself, he reached out for help to meet the large demand for English education.
Through the InclUUsion program, Utrecht University provided much of initial infrastructure to get EAN off the ground. A dedicated group of volunteers quickly gathered around and EAN opened its doors to students in February of 2017. The following fall, current executive director Kinan Alajak joined EAN as a teacher. In early 2018, Kinan took the lead. There Kinan reshaped the administrative structure and significantly grew the organization. Tejaswini Pawar joined EAN as a marketing director that spring, further expanding the administrative apparatus. The following summer, Phillip, Kinan, and Tejaswini incorporated EAN as a foundation.