April 2020

Stories to share:

 When I was creating my goals for April, I wanted to focus my energy on reuniting our mentors and mentees. I set a lofty goal: 80%-100% of mentors and mentees are connected and communicating weekly. I did not expect the variance in student and mentor situations. Many students left their laptops at home and could not check their school email. Some only have texting capabilities. Luckily, I was able to help 7 students sign up on Remind101 to receive texts from staff members like me. A handful of student families have been hard to reach via email and phone. I have had to ask for co-worker’s help in reaching these students. I also did not expect for mentors to have transitions during this time making it difficult for them to connect with their mentee every week. What I have found is that each person is experiencing some sort of change, making it harder to connect than the in-person model. Instead of wanting the goal to be weekly contact between all the Be the One mentors and mentees, I have reframed my mindset to “Are all my mentors and mentees doing okay and how can Be the One help?”

I emailed a mentee’s grandma to let her know her grandson had received messages from his mentor on his email. She responded gratefully and said I was her only contact to the school right now. Her grandson’s laptop was broken so he wasn’t getting his assignments off of the school email. I connected her to our administration and counselors so they could help get his computer fixed. Not only are we connecting students to their mentors, but we are connecting the students to school staff and resources to help families navigate distance learning.

Some mentors have started sending care packages to their mentees. Here are a couple quotes from the students who have received a package:

“I think it’s awesome that mentors are doing this for their mentees. You never know the home life some children have. Getting packages may have helped some mentees drastically.” -Mentee

“I received the package today! Gosh, I did not expect this much! Thank you so much for everything! I read Moonstruck as fast as I opened the package! It was so cute! I am definitely buying the next books. I tried the mug cake and it was sooo goooodd. I loved it! I also plan on using that tiny comic book to draw in!” – Mentee

“Thank you so much for the package, it made me smile. I got home from babysitting and opened it and it made my day. Thank you.” – Mentee

April Goals:

  • Facilitate social interaction between mentor and student mentee (Email and mail correspondence is available)
  • 80%-100% of mentors and mentees are connected and communicating weekly (A little over 50% of mentors and mentees are communicating regularly)

May Goals:

  • Check in with all 42 mentors
  • Check in with all 42 mentees

Mentoring Update:

  • 42 Active Matches
  • 22 mentors and mentees are exchanging emails regularly
  • 4 Care Packages were sent to mentees (See attached photos)

Program Development

  • Mentors and Mentees are now communicating by email, Remind101 and snail mail.
    • Mentors can send cards, care packages or use professional delivery services such as food delivery or Amazon. Mentors cannot drop off packages.
    • All email and Remind101 messages are sent to mentor cooridinator before sending to recipient
    • No email/phone contact information is exchanged between mentors/mentee
    • Looking into Zoom correspondence between mentors and mentees
  • Setting up “Adopt a Be the One Senior”
    • Permission from parents
    • Be the One mentors and Partners for Schools volunteers can sign up to support one of our 4 seniors. Between May 11-Graduation Day, these seniors will receive care packages from the volunteers who “adopted” them.
    • Seniors are missing Spring sports/concerts/drama productions, Prom, and graduation, in the traditional sense. We want to show that we care about them.
    • Idea was proposed by BTO Mentor based on the “Adopt a High School Student” Facebook page