In my life, the mentor’s I’ve had have always been people I’ve recognized after the fact. I think it’s rarer when we find ourselves in intentional mentoring. In either direction – to have the confidence to believe you could be a mentor to someone or conversely the realization of the need for a mentor in your life.
The teen years are a great example of this. Most teens could use a mentor but are not always aware they need any answers or support. Often when I’m interviewing the young women to be in the Pass It On program and I ask them if they have ever had a mentor, most immediately say no. Then after I describe the qualities of character of a mentor they remember one, if not more mentors from their life. How often are we affected, inspired, ‘mentored’ in our life? How often do we give credit to those who have led/affected our choices?
In November, the older girls – the mentors (grade 10-12) – chose their buddies (grade 8 girls) that they will mentor for the duration of the program (end of April). What an interesting experience to watch the young women pick the younger girls they are going to intentionally mentor for the next 5 months. How do you decide who needs you and your insight the most? How do we know who most needs our help? These young women took the plunge with confidence – teenage hood is good for that. They believe in the wisdom they have gained in their short 15-17 years. And I know from experience that the experience of the next 5 months will mentor the mentors. There is always so much to learn, so much wisdom to gain.
Something to think on – who are your mentors? Let’s take the time to acknowledge the mentors in our life and thank them for leading us thus far.
Kate Maurice – Mentor/Supervisor, Pass It On program