Rotary Club hears about mentoring program
The Rotary Club of Woy Woy has heard a talk about the Central Coast Secondary Schools Mentoring Program, which is currently recruiting volunteer mentors on the Peninsula.
Mr Richard Kennedy spoke to the club about his work as a mentor and how the program was impacting local high school students.
"Richard commenced his presentation by stating that the role of the mentor was to pass on life skills to the mentee.
"By sharing life experiences, skills and knowledge, the mentor helps a young person achieve their goals and plan for their future pathways.
"He liked the definition of a mentor as 'a wise and trusted friend, such as grandfather or grandmother', someone they can talk to on a confidential basis where they cannot talk to a parent or teacher," said club publicity officer Mr Vic Deeble.
Mr Kennedy also explained how the first duty of a mentor was ensuring their mentee completes their Higher School Certificate.
The program has been running for 20 years and has gone by many names during its lifespan.
The volunteer mentors are trained on a two-day course and then on a continuing basis.
"Applying for jobs today is quite different to what it was in the past.
"The applicant can be interviewed on their own phone using an audio-visual link.
"The education system has also dramatically changed over the years," said Mr Kennedy
"Mentees often have a very narrow appreciation of what is available to them.
"Some come from families where few members of the family have ever had a job.
"Mentors can have a large influence on the life of the person being mentored.
"Confidence can be dramatically improved as their range of experiences are extended.
"Developing communication skills is an important part of the process.
"The mentor is not required to find them a job," he said.
All the mentoring is done in the schools, one on one, with a teacher present.
All mentors must have a Working with Children check.
"It is a very rewarding activity for both the mentor and the mentee," Mr Kennedy said.
Newsletter, 3 Jun 2019
Vic Deeble, Rotary Club of Woy Woy