When recruiting new mentors, some common questions we get asked are what do mentors do, how does the program work, etc. We often respond with the solid research that proves mentoring works, the outcomes LSS Mentoring Services reaches each year, the number of people who are mentoring and the number of kids waiting for their mentor.
In its simplest form, mentors “make kids happy,” according to Daytona, a 5th grader at Eugene Field Elementary. Daytona has been matched with her mentor Janet for the past five years. The two met when Daytona was a first grader, and the talkative girl was a bit quieter. At first, she thought that someone was paying Janet to come visit her. After Janet explained that she managed Breadsmith and mentoring had nothing to do with her job, the two developed a great bond.
“Mentoring lets you develop the best relationship you could ever have,” said Janet. “I know that mentoring is a service for kids, but it has been great for me. It reminds me of what is important. That people are important.”
Daytona likes talking to Janet. They talk about their pets. They also play board games and cards. Anything that makes Daytona laugh is Janet’s favorite thing to do each week.
For Daytona, the best thing about having a mentor is “knowing that someone always has your back and can help you.” And for Janet, the best part about mentoring is, “knowing you can make a difference. And it is just fun to be in a school each week!”