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Jim Spillman discovered the Backside Learning Center through our English teacher, Dailey, while he was volunteering at the Purrfect Day Cat Cafe. He first started helping by tutoring individuals one-on-one.

Jim served in the Air Force then later worked in market research and sales for 40 years. He was previously a volunteer at Jeffersontown High School teaching adult literacy and ESL for six years. He now dedicates his time to volunteering with us a couple days a week, traveling the world with his wife. In the past two years, Jim has gone from a tutor to a teacher in the classroom.

“What amazes me most is how enthusiastic they are. Everybody seems so interested in learning. They try so hard,” Jim said. He has taken everyday objects and more specifically work tools that the Backside workers use and incorporated that into his lessons, making them easier to comprehend.

From learning 7 different languages, “English is the hardest,” Jim said. He encourages his students to speak up in the classroom despite the fear of being wrong. “Don’t be afraid to make a mistake. Everybody does it. That’s the only way you’re going to learn.”

Jim is a volunteer that lives to help others. “I love it over here. I love helping people out, finding out what they need and doing it,” he said. We are grateful for all of the service and commitment Jim has dedicated to the track workers.

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