National Mentoring Month: Now is the Time to Become a Mentor

January is National Mentoring Month, a time to encourage Americans to become mentors for the children and teens in our communities. Many of our clients at Applegate & Dillman Elder Law are at a place in life where they can be mentors – and reap the rewards. Retirees make great mentors since they have spare time and life experience to share. Being a mentor ensures young people have dependable people to look up to and gives the mentor a feeling of purpose and pleasure.

Did you know 1 in 3 people grow up without having a mentor? This means no one to help guide them through life’s challenges such as studying for a test, applying for college, and staying out of trouble. You can be that mentor to guide young people through life!

The importance of being a mentor

There are many benefits for youth to have a mentor while they face day-to-day challenges. Having a mentor can make them feel appreciated and know that they matter, which can give them the confidence to be successful. Having someone who has gone through it before them can help them to make better decisions, now and in the future.

There are also benefits for the mentor. It’s a great, productive way to give back to the community and you can help ensure the community is in good hands for the future.

You can be a mentor while staying safe

With COVID-19, and the recent spike in cases due to the Omicron variant, mentoring in person can be difficult. But there are several local organizations with virtual and safe mentoring options:

  1. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana
    1. BBBSCI creates and supports one-to-one mentoring relationships between adults and children ages 8-18 in Hamilton, Johnson, and Marion Counties. The organization has adapted its interview process, online training, and mentor program to virtual if the applicant prefers it. Each match can meet in person or connect virtually – based on the comfort levels of the Big, Little, and parents.
  2. Miracle Works
    1. Miracle Works is a community service based program that empowers families in need to achieve their goals without relying on services. Mentors can help participants with life skills training, building healthy relationships, positive communication, and more. Some of these sessions are one-on-one and some sessions are in a group setting. They ask all mentors and participants to wear a mask for in-person meetings, and have virtual meeting options as well.
  3. National Mentoring Partnership
    1. National Mentoring Partnership provides a database of mentoring opportunities based on zip code. When filling out the search form, interested mentors can select virtual meetings if desired.

Still not sure about becoming a mentor?

You don’t have to commit to mentoring immediately to make a difference to today’s young people. HOPE Mentoring has launched a program for mentors to write letters of encouragement to the incarcerated teens they serve. Due to COVID-19 protocols, 372 youth who are already separated from their families and community are facing even further isolation. They are in need of support and attention to combat the negative outcomes of prolonged isolation. You can write a letter on their website, and the HOPE Leadership team will deliver weekly cards to local juvenile facilities.

Make sure you make the world better by becoming a mentor today. There are so many safe options, even during the pandemic. We’d love to hear from you about your experiences with mentoring. Contact us today and maybe we’ll share your story on social media or in our newsletter!