In Greek mythology, Mentor was the son of Alcumus and, in his old age, a friend of Odysseus. When Odysseus left for the Trojan War he placed Mentor in charge of his son, Telemachus, and of his palace. The first recorded modern usage of the term can be traced to a book entitled “Les Aventures de Telemaque”, by the French writer François Fénelon. In the book the lead character is that of Mentor. This book was published in 1699 and was very popular during the 18th century and the modern application of the term can be traced to this publication. This is the source of the modern use of the word mentor: a trusted friend, counselor or teacher, usually a more experienced person.
It is a matter of trust. Mentoring is a structured and trusting relationship that brings young people together with caring individuals who offer guidance, support and encouragement aimed at developing the competence and character of the mentee.
A mentor is an adult who provides a young person with support, counsel, friendship, reinforcement and constructive example. Mentors are good listeners, people who care, people who want to help young people bring out strengths that are already there. A mentor is not a foster parent, therapist, parole officer, or cool peer.
All young people have the potential to succeed in life and contribute to society. However, not all children get the support they need to thrive. By all estimates, an astounding 17.6 million young people – nearly half the population of young people between 10 and 18 years of age live in situations that put them at risk of not living up to their potential.
Without immediate intervention by caring adults, they could make choices that not only undermine their futures, but, ultimately, the economic and social well-being of our nation.
Mentoring – the presence of caring adults offering support, advice, friendship, reinforcement and constructive examples – has proved to be a powerful tool for helping young people fulfills their potential. Mentoring can help by:
- Improving young people’s attitudes towards their parents, peers and teachers
- Encouraging students to stay motivated and focused on their education
- Helping young people face daily challenges; and
- Offering young people opportunities to consider new career paths and get much-needed economic skills and knowledge.
By using your influence and resources as a decision maker, you can bring new hope to young lives through the power of mentoring. And you’ll be surprised how much you will benefit, as well.
WE ARE ACTIVELY SEEKING MENTORS FOR OUR FRAMINGHAM AND WALTHAM HIGH SCHOOL PROGRAMS. FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT :
Lauren Kracoff, Framingham HS Mentoring Program Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
508-620-4963 ext. 27545
Ethel Williams, Waltham High School Program Director, email@example.com