Goodwill needs mentors for youth programs

‘They really blossom into these wonderful young people.’

ROANOKE, Va. – Goodwill Industries of the Valleys is looking for adult mentors for their youth mentoring programs to provide positive guidance to youth in Roanoke City and Franklin County.

Mentors only have to commit to four hours a month for a year. They will help kids and teens by taking them out to eat, attend sporting events or help them with homework.

Research shows that mentors play a powerful role in providing young people with the tools to strive and thrive, to attend and engage in school, and to reduce or avoid risky behavior like drug use. In turn, these young people are:

  • 55% more likely to be enrolled in college
  • 81% more likely to report participating regularly in sports or extracurricular activities
  • 78% more likely to volunteer regularly in their communities
  • More than twice as likely to say they held a leadership position in a club or sports team

Goodwill mentoring programs help local youth overcome disadvantages, avoid delinquency and achieve success.

“They really blossom into these wonderful young people. Their self-confidence increases. Their comfort, you know, in sort of interacting with others. Their ability to navigate the world and just become more independent," said Stephanie Hoer, the senior director of program services. "They really grow into just these amazing, wonderful young people and, I think, to do in small part to the service that we provide here, but in large part to the mentor relationship that they develop.

January is also National Mentoring Month.

Goodwill will be hosting a mentor training on Tuesday with sessions from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. or 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. To find out how to apply to be a mentor, contact Goodwill or visit their website.

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