Most people know that mentoring a young person can have profound positive effects on the young person that can be lifelong. Mentoring can also impact the mentor in ways you may not think.
Here are five examples how mentoring is beneficial to the person doing the mentoring, and how someone like you can consider getting involved:
1. A sense of accomplishment
Watching your mentee grow and develop with your support can create a sense of satisfaction. Investing your time and knowledge in young people is an investment in the future.
2. Increased patience
Helping young people in navigating these difficult times will help you naturally develop patience, a skill that will benefit you even beyond the mentoring relationship. (U.S. Department of Labor, n.d.)
3. You’ll learn something about the world
Being a mentor allows you to gain more insight into other cultures and different communities. This can create a different, deeper understanding and respect for diverse groups.
4. You’ll learn something about yourself
Mentors report that their experiences provided them with a form of “cultural capital” that helped them make sense of their own past experiences and current challenges. (Rhodes 2004)
5. It’s fun!
Mentoring youth brings out the kid in you. Going to the playground, grabbing sundaes, and ice skating can take you back to a simpler time when you were younger and carefree.
Given all the ways that mentoring can impact and improve a mentor’s life, hopefully you’ll consider taking a role as a mentor in a child’s life. Adoption Network Cleveland: The Ohio Family Connection launched the EMBRACE (Enhanced Mentoring, Building Relationships and Cultivating Experiences) Mentor Program, for youth 10 and older, to provide support and understanding through shared life experiences.
Learn more about EMBRACE Mentoring and attend our upcoming Mentor Orientation and Training on Oct. 27.
Donikea Austin is the Program Coordinator for Youth Services at Adoption Network Cleveland.