VOICE Mentors

Nathan Jackson, Assistant Opinion Editor

Sometimes, the most disadvantaged in our community need a helping hand. And sometimes, that hand may not be there. That’s where VOICE Mentors step in.

VOICE Mentors are volunteers who spend half an hour to an hour and a half with kids with academic and/or social-emotional needs across the district. They ensure that students can grow in a positive environment, if only for a short amount of time. The background the mentees come from can be heartbreaking; it really goes to show how much of a positive net force mentors can be in students’ lives.

Mentees too can have a positive effect on their mentors’ lives. As a VOICE mentor myself, I can attest to how great being a VOICE mentor is. Most kids in the VOICE program desperately need help in one form or another and don’t really have a chance to get it unless it’s through the program. Giving them the chance to overcome any barriers that might be in their academic or social-emotional way is enriching. It’s like being a Big Brother or Big Sister. That motivation can help drive a mentee to be better in school.

Besides the good they do, VOICE mentors can act as a friend when their mentee needs them the most. My mentee had social issues, but once they gained a consistent friend, they were able to really come out of their shell.

VOICE Mentors provide invaluable help for those in our community who need it the most. And that’s why this Thanksgiving I’m giving thanks to all the VOICE Mentors out there.

Currently, there is a serious shortage of mentees who need mentors. If you’d like to become a VOICE Mentor, please email voice@isfdn.org