Mentor Center of Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Nevada is seeking volunteers |

Mentor Center of Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Nevada is seeking volunteers

Teri Vance

The Mentor Center of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Nevada is kicking off its Drive for 55 mentor recruitment campaign with an information and training night.

“It’s a drive to get 55 new mentors by June,” said Ruth Gordon, executive director of the Mentor Center. “It’s a pretty aggressive campaign.”

The kick-off training will be 5:30 p.m. Wednesday in the library of the Boys & Girls Club, 1870 Russell Way. It will include food, information about mentoring and training for new mentors.

All who are interested in learning more about this program are invited to attend.

Mentors are matched one-on-one with an at-risk youth from the community, and are asked to spend an hour a week with them.

As part of the Drive for 55, Gordon said, the center is looking at ways to expand the program.

She said she is hoping employers will give employees time off to spend time with students at the Boys & Girls Club.

“It opens a whole new area of hanging out with kids,” she said. “It’s a way to make these kids feel extra special.”

Mentoring has been proven to lower a child’s risk of future gang participation, drug use and incarceration.

It also has academic and self-esteem benefits for the children involved.

Gordon said mentors provide children with a needed confidant.

“Every kid, no matter who they are, needs somebody else to talk to besides a mom,” she said.

“These kids in particular don’t have a lot of extended family. They need somebody else to be there for them.”

There are children waiting to be matched, Gordon said, and she’s especially looking for mentors to work with teenage boys.

“It’s a big goal, but I think it’s doable,” she said. “Especially if we really see it as a need for the whole community.”

Call 775-445-3346 for more information and to RSVP.

Training for new mentors will be held the first Wednesday of every month. However days can be adjusted to accommodate differing schedules.