Can you help support a student? This week I received a call from someone who works for the Whatcom County Mobile Crisis Team. She was working with a student from our school and looking for additional support for him. Her question: “Do you still have Be the One, and how does he get signed up?” I was happy to share with her how mentoring can support a student, how he could get connected, and also that we have programs in other schools throughout the county. What a great feeling to know the professional people have heard of our mentoring program and see it as an asset for our students and community.

I just need someone to talk to!  This month I met two freshman girls who requested mentors. Both of these young ladies are good students with supportive, intact families and aren’t having any issues with attendance, learning, or school behavior. They both talked about experiencing anxiety and feeling withdrawn or lonely at times. They both thought having a supportive adult mentor to talk with each week would really help. Frequently, people have the misconception that only “troubled students” or those who demonstrate “at-risk behaviors” need mentors.  Actually, everyone needs a supportive adult outside their family. These girls are the kind of students who go unnoticed, but still have real needs. I’m happy to say I was able to match both of them with mentors, and they are off to a good start!

Program Updates:

  • We hosted a New Mentor Orientation in December which netted five new quality mentors. Two of them have already been matched with girls at LHS.
  • I received some new referrals this month and have a couple of other students I am getting to know who might be mentoring candidates sometime this year.
  • Our district Family Services Staff work to support a variety of needs, including those impacted by recent flooding. Some mentors have made donations of household goods to help in this area. Others were able to give online to the Adopt a Family Go Fund Me sponsored by our leadership class.
  • Covid continues to present challenges with attendance for some of our students. I have had mentors exposed as well and had to cancel their meetings as a result. I’m grateful for those mentors who continue to show up and have been so gracious with schedule changes and cancellations.

Upcoming:

  • Next New Mentor Orientation scheduled for January 13 has five registered already
  • Area coordinators will meet in January to plan upcoming Mentor Equippings for Winter and Spring
  • Brian and I plan to offer a Youth Mental Health First Aid class in February.
  • We hope to be able to offer new BTO T-shirts to all participants later in the school year, taking orders in the new year and delivering by spring break.