Many children in our community are eager to connect with adults who are willing to listen to them, share with them, and help them develop to their highest potential. Mentoring is very effective in helping children to stay in school, avoid dangerous behaviors, and navigate the sometimes bumpy road to adulthood.
The AHM Lanterns Mentoring Program is a school based model. Mentors and students meet once a week for one hour (usually during lunch and recess) in the six schools in the towns of Andover, Hebron and Marlborough. The mentoring pairs eat lunch together, play games, do crafts, and take walks outside. They form important friendships that inspire children to be the best they can be. Youth who are matched with a mentor demonstrate improved academic performance, improved peer/family relationships, increased communication skills, decreased drug use, and improved school attendance.
What is a Mentor?
A mentor is a caring person who provides young people with support, counsel, friendship, and constructive example. Mentors are good listeners who are committed to helping children develop their strengths.
Mentors must exhibit several important qualities to ensure the success of their relationship with a child.
- A personal commitment to be involved with a young person for a minimum of one year
- Respect for individuals and for their abilities to make their own choices in life
- The ability to listen and to accept different points of view
- The ability to empathize with another person’s struggles
- The ability to see solutions and opportunities as well as barriers
Please visit www.preventionworksct.org for more information.
Become a Mentor
Would you like to make a positive difference to a child? Do you have one hour a week to give to a child in need of one-on-one attention? AHM Youth and Family Services has the opportunity for you to be a mentor for children and youth in the local schools. Mentors are trained in areas such as communication, mentoring session strategies, and setting goals. The mentoring relationship takes place once a week, within the school during school hours.
Young people with mentors are more likely to resist peer pressure and substance abuse, stay in school, achieve and aspire to better grades, and go on to college. Mentoring not only benefits a child, but can also help the mentor increase his or her leadership and communication skills. Both the mentors and children in the Lanterns program find much joy in the positive relationships formed.
Mentors are currently needed in Andover, Marlborough and Hebron. If you are interested in learning more about mentoring opportunities, please contact Laurie Larsen, AHM Lanterns Mentoring Coordinator, at 860-228-0871 or by email at LaurieL@ahmyouth.org .