Across the country, individuals are reflecting upon, recognizing and celebrating those people who have significantly impacted their lives in a positive and supportive way. National Mentoring Month offers an opportunity to reflect upon our own lives. Are we significantly sharing our knowledge, love and guidance in ways that are effectively reaching the youth in our communities?
When someone believes in us and is truly on our side, our resilience grows. How many of us would be where we are today without the encouragement of a supportive person in our lives when we needed it most? Or, if we’ve been extremely fortunate, several different ones along our way? Having positive role models is consistently cited throughout success stories as keys to later success in life.
For the past 16 years, Girls/Boyz First Mentoring has provided youth, ages 8-18, with the extra support of a caring, positive adult. During our existence, over 100 Girls/Boyz First mentors have served over 150 children. Girls/Boyz First mentees join our program because they want to have an extra adult to spend time with. They meet weekly with their mentors, for a minimum of two hours, and share hobbies and interests together in the community.
Girls/Boyz First Mentors let their mentees know that they are rooting for them 100%. They help their mentees dream beyond their current reality. Girls/Boyz First Mentors help weave a web of safety when times are tough. With the consistent guidance and support of their mentors, Girls/Boyz First mentees grow up to be productive working members of our community. 93.2% of our mentees graduate from high school. It is for many, a life-changing experience. Some mentees have even become the first in their family to go to college!
Mentoring works (its research-based), is cost effective, and is straightforward. This close, personal involvement of caring adults occurs at a critical time in the lives of young people when they are making decisions and choices that can impact their future.
During these times of tight federal and state budgets, Girls/Boyz First needs to broaden its base of financial support. Mentoring is too important not to continue for the participants, the businesses and the community itself that benefit from it. Please help celebrate National Mentoring Month in central Vermont by giving a tax-free contribution to Girls/Boyz First. We have just launched a new crowd funding site at causevox.com. http://girlsboyzfirst.causevox.com/
For more information on becoming or finding a mentor, contact Wendy Freundlich, program coordinator at 229-4798. Mentors make a difference!
Wendy Freundlich, Program Coordinator