The Clubhouse Network Celebrates National Mentoring Month
January is National Mentoring Month. National Mentoring Month was launched in 2002 by the Harvard School of Public Health, MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership, and Corporation for National and Community Service. It’s an opportunity for us to celebrate and honor our mentors, recognize the crucial role of mentoring in Clubhouses around the world, and of course recruit new mentors.
The importance of mentoring cannot be overstated. According to MENTOR:
Mentoring, at its core, guarantees young people that there is someone who cares about them, assures them they are not alone in dealing with day-to-day challenges, and makes them feel like they matter. Research confirms that quality mentoring relationships have powerful positive effects on young people in a variety of personal, academic, and professional situations.
Indeed, Clubhouse youth experience these benefits from mentors. 92% of Clubhouse members surveyed say that mentors “care about me and my well-being” and the same percentage say they feel like they can trust their mentors.
National research and studies confirm that mentoring can only improve outcomes for young people. “Students who meet regularly with their mentors are 52% less likely than their peers to skip a day of school and 37% less likely to skip a class. (Public/Private Ventures Study of Big Brothers Big Sisters).”
In short, mentoring has the potential to make a big difference in the lives of teens. That’s why it’s baked into our mission and learning model. Clubhouses would not be what they are without the mentors who give their time and energy to our members. Through the Clubhouse Network’s unique group mentoring program, Clubhouse Mentors join a community of young people and adults who create, invent, and explore together using the latest in technology. With mentors and members working side-by-side, the walls between teacher and learner are broken down for a truly special learning experience.
In the Clubhouse, young people are encouraged to follow their own interests and Mentors are there to support them through that process. Chris is a mentor at the Clubhouse at Computers4Kids in Charlottesville, VA. In the photo below, you can see him working with members Iraj and Patience in their audio studio. They stripped the sound from an animated short film and are using professional-level Avid Pro Tools software to create their own sound effects and ambient soundtrack. At C4K, like other Clubhouses across The Network, members and mentors work shoulder-to-shoulder to solve problems, have fun, and build STEM skills.
We are grateful to mentors like Chris who are having an impact on the lives of youth in Clubhouses across our Network. You, too, could be making an impact. Our mentors come from all walks of life and no technical skills are required. While the time commitment is different at every Clubhouse, all mentors receive training and support. Visit our Clubhouse locations page to find a site near you and then let us know if you’re interested in mentoring.