FIC’s Youth Mentor Program serves children ages 8 to 17 from varying backgrounds and life circumstances. Jason was an 11-year old boy living with his grandparents who adopted him and his two brothers. When Jason was assigned a Youth Mentor, he was struggling at home and at school. Jason had difficulty expressing himself, which often resulted in explosions of anger and frustration. Jason’s family was desperate for support because of his lack of respect at home and his failing grades.
Jason’s youth mentor worked with him to establish a strong rapport and a trusting relationship. He challenged Jason to treat others the way he would like to be treated. He also held Jason accountable for his grades and missed assignments, as he was at risk of repeating the 6th grade. After some time Jason began making changes at school and at home. Over the course of five months, he dramatically improved his grades.
The day Jason found out he had passed the 6th grade, his youth mentor was there. His mentor described sharing this moment with Jason and seeing his excitement as incredible. Jason was genuinely proud of himself and his sense of accomplishment could be felt by everyone. Jason also made significant progress at home. He began treating his siblings and grandparents with respect and contributing positively to the household. He developed new self-confidence and got better at handling life’s challenges.
Jason has since "graduated" from mentor services. Afterward, he became involved in FIC’s summer program and a Ju-jitsu class offered by one of our community partners. Jason and his family are connected to natural supports and to their community now more than ever. FIC’s Youth Mentor Program was a terrific stepping stone in their journey to wellness and positivity.