Think ‘mentor’ is just a buzzword? Think again!
Mentoring is not simply companionship. It’s not simply training, nor is it simply talking every once in a while. Mentorship is a dynamic relationship between the mentor and mentee. It is an ever-evolving dialogue with the goal of providing assistance and support to the mentee. Put simply, it is like being a parent, a best friend, and a boss all at once.
Put yourself in the shoes of a high school junior, living under the poverty line with little guidance from a parent – perhaps due to lack of time or lack of knowledge of the parent themselves. Your neighborhood is rife with gang activity, many of your friends are becoming parents themselves, and you’ve never been out of your city. You know of no other way to live; you want to get out, but you don’t know how.
But a teacher, a friend, even someone you meet by accident takes you under their wing. They help you discover your strengths, your gifts, and your dreams. They teach you how to make a budget, how to dress for a job interview. They even help you fill out a college application and help you enroll in scholarship programs. Most of all, they help you believe in yourself and teach you to look to the future, not just the present.
Mentors and mentees can range from a high-powered executive and a junior associate to a woman that provides for her family by mending garments and a neighbor girl who wishes to do the same. Mentorship is a calling, a mission to bettering the life of another person with no expectation or recompense. Mentorship is about making a connection and providing the wisdom that years of experience have given.
But mentorship, which is primarily a gift of time, still cannot be done well without some cost. Perhaps it’s administrative or staff-related costs to match participants or maybe a scholarship to a mentee to attend a career- related conference with their mentor. To give a gift of a healthy, supportive, goal-oriented relationship to a struggling, inexperienced, unfocused young adult, donate now. If you believe that you have the patience, knowledge, and dedication to be a mentor and to share yourself with a mentee, please contact us now.
Instruction in youth is like engraving in stone. ~Moroccan Proverb