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Sam Linton: A Volunteer's Journey of Advocacy and Support for Ukraine Through ENGin

In the midst of adversity, there are often stories of resilience, compassion, and action that shine through the darkness. One such story is that of Sam Linton, a volunteer with ENGin whose journey of support for Ukraine is both inspiring and deeply impactful. From learning Ukrainian on Duolingo to becoming a vocal advocate for the cause, Sam's involvement with ENGin has been a testament to the power of individual action in the face of global challenges.


ENGin volunteers Sam and Karen Linton

Finding Inspiration


Sam's journey with ENGin began as a personal quest for connection and contribution. 


Reflecting on his motivations, Sam shares, "One month after the full-scale invasion, I was in a really bad car wreck. While recovering, I started studying Ukrainian using Duolingo mainly and some books. At the time I thought maybe I could volunteer in a few years after retiring, so learning Ukrainian was something I could do in the meantime." 

His discovery of ENGin through social media provided an immediate avenue to channel his newfound language skills into meaningful volunteer work.


Advocacy Through Engagement


Through ENGin, Sam found not only language exchange partners but a community of support and a platform for advocacy. 


"I now have four buddies, plus my wife has a buddy and I have two amazing tutors. They’re all like family to me! My journey with ENGin is that simple!" 

Sam's advocacy efforts extend beyond language exchange sessions; he actively engages with policymakers in the United States, leveraging his personal connections to Ukraine to amplify his voice for change. His participation in events like the Ukraine Action Summit in D.C. demonstrates the profound impact of individual advocacy efforts in shaping policy decisions.


Building Community


Sam's commitment to advocacy started with his role in the Volunteer Advocacy Group, a small group of fellow ENGin volunteers dedicated to raising awareness and mobilizing support for Ukraine. 


Describing the group's activities, Sam explains, "A small but awesome number signed up and we had a few Zoom calls. We have a Telegram group where we encourage each other. Mostly, we learn from each other about opportunities to let our voices be heard." 

This group is just another way to encourage volunteers to make a difference in their communities and beyond.


“For those in the United States, I now try to point everyone first to visit https://tinyurl.com/Call4UkraineZoom. It’s a weekly call especially meant for those who have never called their members of Congress before.”

Also, Sam recommends checking out https://americancoalitionforukraine.org, of which ENGin is a coalition member.


Spreading Support


For Sam, supporting Ukraine goes beyond his involvement with ENGin. He encourages fellow volunteers to explore additional avenues of support, whether through financial contributions or grassroots initiatives. Sam emphasizes the importance of both individual and collective action, stating: 


"When I talk to anyone about Ukraine, I always try to bring up ENGin and tell them that there are two ways to help — by becoming a volunteer, or financially supporting ENGin, or both." 

By raising awareness of organizations like ENGin and Hugs from Friends, Sam amplifies the impact of his advocacy efforts and invites others to join him in making a difference.


Looking Ahead


Sam's journey with ENGin is far from over. 

"I’m so excited because in a few months I plan to go visit all of my Ukrainian friends in person!"

His unwavering dedication to the cause serves as a beacon of hope in challenging times, inspiring others to take meaningful action and stand in solidarity with Ukraine.


Sam Linton's story is a reminder that every individual has the power to effect change, no matter how small their actions may seem. Through ENGin and beyond, Sam exemplifies the transformative potential of volunteerism, advocacy, and community engagement in building a better world.



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Guest
May 16
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Great to see this !


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May 10
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May 09
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