What inspired you to become a mentor?
I have been very fortunate in my life to have a terrific family, friends, teachers, coaches and role models. Without their guidance, support, and love, I would not be the woman I am today nor be as successful as I am. I’ve always known since I first volunteered in college that I wanted to give back to children especially. I wanted to “pay it forward” and take the wonderful lessons that I learned and try to make a difference in a child’s life that was not as fortunate. I wanted to let them know that there are people in this world that do care.
What has been the most rewarding moment of being a mentor?
I have been mentoring the same youth for two years now. I have watched the progress that she has made since we first met… She only knew how to survive because that’s all she had been doing her entire life. Through mentoring the abundance of time that she and I have spent together, her confidence is growing (she has a full time job) and now she is learning not just how to survive, but how to plan, flourish, and live.
What have you learned from your mentee?
Everyone, especially children, has so much potential to change the face of the world. All they need is guidance, love, and someone to say, “You matter.” I try to keep this in mind when volunteering.
For those who are thinking about mentoring, what would you say to them that would convince them it’s worth their time?
For the joy that you bring to these children’s lives just for a short time, they give it back ten-fold. Your reward is so much greater.