Most of us as adults have one or two adults from our past who cared enough about us, invested in us, and helped shape us into the adults that we are today. Some of them may have been formal mentors or adults in our lives who cared. . Many youth mentoring organizations have rightly claimed through the years that mentoring is a proven youth development strategy, coaching kids to succeed in life, enhancing their learning skills, and helping them build resilience and self-control.
According to Vermont’s Mentoring Partnership:
“Youth with mentors are less likely to engage in risky behavior with drugs and alcohol, and are more likely to develop positive relationships with peers and adults, and to grow up to become productive members of society.”
So, today, we’re exploring how kids can benefit from great mentors in their lives.
How Do Kids Benefit From Great Mentors And Youth Mentoring Organizations?
Children can be coached to realize their full potential.
Mentoring creates a positive impact in children’s lives. While it may not seem like a huge investment to the mentor, spending a few hours a week or every month with a child; to the child, it’s huge. Children who have strong mentors are more likely to enroll in college and volunteer regularly themselves, and become less likely to skip school or class.
Children can learn more about themselves.
Having an outside perspective from a respected adult can help children grasp strengths that they may not have realized they have. A mentor can help a child struggling with an academic subject and come up with a problem-solving solution that may have not been recognized before.
If children are repeatedly told that they won’t be successful or aren’t good in a certain subject, they’ll believe that and it becomes a “truth” in their subconscious. With a good mentor who’s behind them while they’re struggling through a certain class or life event, they can learn that they do have the skills and aptitude necessary and that can build on itself!
Children can become better leaders.
Statistically, children who have mentors in their lives increase their leadership skills. Mentoring can even have effects on their careers in the future. It’s a very useful management technique to have had coaching in your own life and then to use those lessons that affected you to make a difference in someone else’s. In addition, having a mentor who points out strengths to you can help with the self-confidence to go after the career that you want.
Most importantly, though, and to include all of the points above, mentors can change a child’s life.
While we strongly encourage every child to work with a mentor to reach their full potential, but for some kids, at the crossroads of adolescence where healthy decisions need to be made and right/wrong choices can have lifelong consequences, mentors are worth their weight in gold!
DREAM, one of the Midwest’s well-known youth mentoring organizations, provides life-changing and life-enriching experiences to at-risk youth through mentoring and after-school programs in Omaha, Nebraska, and Springfield, Missouri. Their proven approach puts children in a comfortable setting where they’re encouraged to discuss openly, learn, and grow as individuals. Are you interested in getting involved with DREAM? Contact us today.