Tuesday, April 12th
5 to 8 pm
Broadcast live from Paseo Nuevo Mall
on KEYT Channel 3
The Fighting Back Mentor Program is partnering with KEYT TV to host the 14th annual “Mission for Mentors” Telethon! This special event will take place on Tuesday, April 12, 2011, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Paseo Nuevo Mall Center Court, and is sponsored by Venoco, Inc. and Cottage Health System.
During the “Mission for Mentors” Telethon, community members call in to pledge their time as volunteer mentors for children in our community. The phone number will be available on KEYT Channel 3 during the Telethon. This event reaches hundreds of people in Santa Barbara County and brings in over 4,700 volunteer mentor hours each year.
The Fighting Back Mentor Program is a school-based program that provides a one-on-one mentoring relationship for at-risk youth in South Santa Barbara County. Mentors are paired with 4th through 8th grade students who are struggling with a variety of academic or personal challenges. Mentors help these youth by teaching them life skills that build resiliency, increase self-esteem, and improve academic performance. Furthermore, they give their mentees a feeling of belonging, the comfort of knowing that they are cared about.
Every youth has a talent, a skill, something to offer. We need to step up and show our kids that those skills can be utilized in a positive way. For example, If a child has the ability to persuade their friends to do something, or if they are always trying to argue with the teacher for what they feel is fair, you can help show them the path towards Student Body Leadership or Youth Council. By reaching out to them now, we take away the appeal of gangs, simply because we show them that we care. As a community, we can help foster success for our kids and ultimately, for ourselves.
Mentors are community members like you; retirees, CEOs, students, construction workers, parents, academic advisors, even local celebrities. If you are one who’s saying, “Well, that’s great, but who has the time?” then I have the solution. Call us. We will connect you with a current mentor who has a busy life like you. It’s only one hour a week. We don’t ask you to give up your vacations, we understand that you may be sick sometimes, and that’s all okay. Talk with your company to ask about their policy on employee “flex time”, giving you one hour per week to go to a school to mentor a child. Smaller local companies can thereby give back to the community without spending money.
As stated, mentors meet with their mentees for at least one hour per week at school for one calendar year. National research shows that that youth who have a positive role model are more likely to avoid engaging in negative behaviors such as drug and alcohol abuse, violence, and truancy, allowing them to succeed both personally and academically.
We currently serve over 100 mentoring relationships throughout Carpinteria, Goleta, and Santa Barbara, but the need for more mentors is great. Close to another hundred students are waiting to be matched….will you be one of them?
Special thanks to our onsite photographer extraordinnaire Carolyn Newstrom.