Communities In Schools mentors and students gathered at Pacific Lutheran University to celebrate and enjoy cooperative games led by MESA staff. MESA (Math, Engineering, Science, Achievement) is a PLU-based program that provides teacher-training and hands-on educational activities for young people. MESA partners with CISL after-school and summer school programs. After dinner the students received affirmation for their growth, and the mentors were given a certificate.
Twenty-eight students in grades 4-8 had the good fortune to be matched with a Champions Mentor this year. They met each week with their mentor to build trust and work on school and personal goals. It has been an amazing year of growth for the students‚Ä¶and the mentors.
Each month mentors gather at the CISL office to share stories and improve their mentoring skills. Led by Champions Mentor Trainer, Mimi Tucci, these meetings are full of emotion and inspiration. Each mentor has a unique story to tell, and almost every mentor wants to continue with their student next year.
Below is a letter sent to the mentors from the mother of a student who was matched with a Champions Mentor:
I am writing this on behalf of my son who was able to experience your love and kindness. His mentor was my son‚Äôs first hero. All of you are heroes in those children’s eyes. Maybe the children do not see that now but hopefully in the future. My son has had a difficult life with epilepsy and dealing with me being very sick at times. I am also a single Mom and my son has needed a positive male role model in his life. My son calls his mentor ‚Äúmy friend.” His mentor cares about his health, his behavior, but above all his self-esteem.
My son is just now understanding that he has epilepsy and his mentor‚Äôs acceptance of him helps make him calmer at home and school. Later, someday he will remember who helped him give him that feeling of it‚Äôs ok to be you, and you are accepted the way you are.
Maybe my son will become somebody else‚Äôs mentor someday. I know that there is a need for more mentors. Please, if you can, put in an hour of your time. It changes lives.
With all my Love and Joy,
-Mom of a mentee
If you want to mentor next year, contact the CISL office at 589-7489, or visit our Website to download an application form: www.lakewood.ciswa.org.