Series: Freeborn County Communities Foundation reports
Published 12:14 pm Friday, January 31, 2014
Organization: STARS/Community Mentor Connection
Report: STARS/Community Mentor Connection is excited to be a recipient of a grant from the Kenneth W. Olson Foundation through the Freeborn County Communities Foundation.
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This donation enables the organization to provide mentors to more youth who are in need of guidance and support. Volunteers who care about youth and want to help them succeed are needed.
Mentors and their mentees meet on their own two to four times a month for educational, recreational and social activities that interest them both. The organization also provides group activity options. For example, this summer it went kayaking and canoeing and tried archery, under the guidance of Albert Lea Community Education.
They also went to Chateau Raceway in Lansing. Activities help mentors and mentees build relationships of trust, so that mentors can encourage their mentees to make positive and healthy decisions. Research shows that mentored youth are less likely to get involved in risky behaviors such as using drugs or alcohol or skipping school.
Mentors also provide opportunities that their mentees would not usually have, introduce them to resources and help them feel they are a valued part of the community. Recently, mentors introduced older youth to Workforce Development through which they had successful summer job experiences. Two youth have received tutoring in reading because their mentors provided transportation and encouragement.
Thank you for your support for mentoring. It is an asset in our community.