Becoming a mentor at the school has been one of the most satisfying things we do. When we started, we never imagined how much we would also benefit from the program. How often do you get the opportunity to spend your lunchtime just having pure fun? We get to spend one-on-one time with a great student, eat lunch, talk, read and play games. The kids are so much fun and they are so happy to see you each week. Sometimes we just talk or play on the computer. Other times we play one of the great games that are available for the mentor program or go outside to play. Often other kids come over to see what we are doing and wish they had a mentor friend also.
This simple act of dedicating one hour each week makes a tremendous difference in a child’s life. Studies show that students with mentors exhibit the following characteristics: fewer absences, better attitudes towards school and better chances of attending college. Having someone they can count on, interact with and be with is a great confidence builder. They consider it a privilege to have a mentor, but the mentors benefit as well. It is so heart-warming to see the look on your student’s face when they see you and remember it is "mentor day," or when you compliment them for making the perfect attendance or honor roll lists. Our students also love it when the mentor is able to go see them in a school play or attend one of their sporting events.
Some mentors get to build long-term relationships with their students, while other mentors may have different children year-to-year when their previous child moves from the area. Each mentoring relationship is different because mentors focus on building a relationship that meets the individual needs of their students. Mentors can help their students with school work, play games, read books or just talk during their meetings.
Please consider volunteering for this very worthwhile program. We guarantee that you will enjoy it as much as your student does! Men and women are needed today to help us with the next school year. If you are interested, or want to know more about how the mentor program works, please call us at 347-5929 or Barbara Pluenneke at 347-5581.