REGION – The Mentor Connector strives to make Rutland County the best community for youth, but we can’t do it alone! Over 65 youth are waiting for a mentor so throughout the next three months, the Mentor Connector is conducting a dynamic mentor recruitment campaign, “100 Mentors in 100 Days,” to raise awareness for the need of community mentors in Rutland, Vt.
This year, thousands of youth across Rutland County lost their sense of security as they were confined at home with rising stress and anxiety. They watched the adults in their lives lose jobs, get sick, and struggle with food as grocery stores were laid bare. Our youth pressed on! Even in “ordinary times,” the autumn brings anxieties; starting in a new class, school, or location, struggling to make new friends, handle family drama, and balance fluctuating workloads. Yet these are not ordinary times. The Covid-19 pandemic has added dimensions of stress unimaginable nine months ago. Uncertain futures, food security, job loss, safety, and social isolation have added to the already daunting challenge of being a young person in today’s world.
As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Mentor Connector has seen a 200% increase in youth referrals. These youth have pressed through unbelievable circumstances throughout the past eight months and they know they need community support, your support, to continue to thrive.
James, 11 years old, is one of our youth waiting for a mentor. With his mom in rehab and his dad in jail, he came to the Mentor Connector hoping to find a mentor who loves science, building, and jokes as much as he does. When asked what his ideal day would look like he simply said, “I would go to Walmart to look at toys, eat at Taco Bell, and walk cute fluffy dogs.”
One hour a week can change the life of a young person like James! Both our virtual and in-person mentoring programs offer a fun way to build a friendship and use teachable moments to instill skills. We provide a wealth of training, support, and activities to help you every step of the way.
With much of the world on pause, now is the perfect time for us to come together and build a stronger, more resilient community for our youth. Hundreds of Rutland County youth are growing up without role models to help guide and support them. These are our next community leaders, business partners, and doctors. Let’s give them the best chance for success. One hour a week; one child’s life forever impacted.