What is REAL MENtors?
Mentors from the community join men from the middle and high school, a coach, teacher, counselor, or other staff member. Mentors and students alike come from all walks of life to share their perspectives, and to learn from each other. They meet in a group every week or every other week for two hours with boys 11 to 18 years of age from the community schools. Meetings are held at the end of the school day. Each meeting has three parts: an activity– doing something FUN, food, and an opportunity to talk. Each of these activities helps boys connect to each other and to the men-tors who are present.
Participation in the group is entirely voluntary for both mentors and students. This is an important aspect of REAL MENtors. The bonds that are formed and the trust that is shared between mentors and students is largely due to the fact that all participants are there because they want to be, and because they believe in the benefits of the program.
Listening without judgment is a key principle of the REAL MENtors program. This allows students to share anything going on in their life when otherwise they may remain quiet and bottle these thoughts and feelings up. The power of being able to speak openly and be heard, to have your thoughts and feelings be acknowledged and accepted is invaluable for these young men.
At the core of the program, we provide a safe space for males, young and old, to say what’s on their mind…when and if they desire to do so.
We come together to appreciate our individual selves, and the potential each has within themselves to grow, develop, and thrive. Acknowledging the individual qualities, talents, and interests that makes each young man unique serves to encourage and empower them to become greater every day.