Sixty new role models for Carson City youths in 60 days - is it possible? The Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Nevada Mentor Center believes it is.
The Mentor Center has been providing services to youths for nearly 12 years and has matched more than 100 mentors with a youth in the area.
The Mentor Center is seeking new 60 mentors who will shape the future of the town's children. After an initial background check and training is conducted for each volunteer, the Mentor Center offers three ways to get involved.
• The first is through traditional one-on-one community-based mentoring. Mentor Center staff members meet with the potential mentor to assess activities and topics of interest that he or she would like to share with a youth. After this, they match the mentor with a youth who might benefit from those interests and whose personality is suited to the mentor's.
The mentor and youth are asked to then meet once a week for a minimum of an hour to do everyday things. Cooking dinner, hiking, planting flowers, fishing or just walking the dog with a youth can help improve grades and reduce truancy and can be beneficial in relationships with peers and adults.
• A mentor may also choose to become involved with the Educational Preparation and Improvement for College (EPIC) program. This is much like the traditional mentoring setting, but emphasis and support is placed on helping with classes, applying to colleges and taking campus tours. Job shadowing is among several activities that EPIC mentors can do with a teen.
• The Mentor Center has a group mentoring program called Str8 Street. The program's tagline is, "Strong Boys, Good Men, Safe Communities." Str8 Street boys and men meet every other Saturday to do activities do such activities as scuba diving, hiking, goal setting, rock climbing and community service projects.
Str8 Street focuses on having strong men help youths develop the skills they need to become healthy, productive men in society. The Mentor Center is hoping to form a parallel group for girls in the next several months.
Call 775-445-3346 for more information, or email Ruth Gordon at firstname.lastname@example.org.