It takes one person to make a difference in the life of a child.

By sharing fun activities and exposing a child to new experiences, mentors encourage positive choices, promote high self-esteem, support academic achievement and introduce their mentee to new ideas.
Clarke County Mentor Program

Clarke County Mentor Program Newsletter
April, 2011
Twentieth Anniversary Breakfast Celebration

Twentieth Anniversary Breakfast Celebration

Over 130 people enjoyed breakfast, a “Power of Mentoring” speech by Hon. Michael Thurmond, and remarks from current mentors and former Director Trudy Bradley at our March 24 event. The Mentor Program would not exist without support from sponsors, business and individual donors, Board members, Clarke County School District personnel, and most importantly, mentors themselves; all these groups were recognized. An exciting moment came when Thomas Annexstad, a Trustee of the Annexstad Family Foundation, announced that the Foundation – – working with The University of Georgia – – would like to give 50 substantial scholarships over the next 10 years to deserving students who have been mentored for 18 months or more through the Clarke County Mentor Program.

Twentieth Anniversary Breakfast Celebration

Thank you 2010-2011 Clarke County Mentor Program Sponsors!

Tom and Karen Annexstad & the Annexstad Family Foundation
Athens Area Chamber of Commerce
Athens Regional Health Services
Bell’s Food Store
Ed Benson
Emmanuel Episcopal Church
Cook, Noell, Tolley & Bates LLP

Fire and Flavor
Georgia Power
Tom and Edwina Johnson Foundation
Jackson EMC Operation Round Up
Junior League of Athens
St. Mary’s Heath Care System
Walton EMC Operation Round Up
Young Professionals Network

Carson Advisory Inc.
Community Water Management

Heyward Allen Cadillac Buick GMC Toyota Scion
Sentry Self Storage

And the winners are …

Mentors who made three or more in-school visits in the month of February had their names entered in a drawing. The winners picked at random are … Earth Fare Gift Basket: Olivia Reed (Timothy); $10 Subway “Bring Lunch to Your Mentee” coupons: Bob Burton (Clarke Middle), Staci Carter (Barrow), John Langone (Whit Davis), Vimla Sinha (Timothy), and Derek Watson (Gaines). Earth Fare would like to remind mentors that every Thursday night, from 4:00-8:00 p.m., kids eat FREE with the purchase of an adult meal valued at $5.00 or more. Many thanks to the over 150 mentors who made time in their busy February schedules to visit their mentee at school regularly.

Interested in Participating in a Focus Group about Mentoring?

As most of you know, the Whatever It Takes initiative’s goal is that every child in Athens-Clarke County will be equipped to graduate from a post-secondary education (vocational training, military service, technical school, or 2-4 year college.) WIT’s efforts include conducting focus groups on numerous topics related to student success. A Mentoring focus group will be held on Tuesday, April 12, from 8:30-10:00 a.m. Contact Paula Shilton if you would like more information. or 706-353-2288.

Challenges in Mentoring

The second session in our “Challenges” series is titled “Issues in Pre-adolescent and Adolescent Development”, and will take place on Tuesday, April 12, from 6:00-7:00 p.m. at the Chamber of Commerce. While younger elementary-age mentees may be friendly chatterboxes, older mentees can present communication challenges. Lenore Katz, Licensed Professional Counselor, will give a short presentation, followed by discussion and a question & answer period. Ms. Katz is a counselor at Clarke Central High School, and also maintains a private practice specializing in adolescent issues.

Interested in Becoming a Mentor? Know of Others Interested?

We have scheduled an additional training, to be held on Wednesday, April 13, from 3:00-4:30 p.m. at the Chamber of Commerce. Visit our website for an application and information.

Sandra and Lindsay Walk to UGA Gymnastics Meet

Mentor/Mentee Cookout

Mark your calendars for Sunday, April 17, from 1:00-3:00 p.m., for a Cookout at Memorial Park. There will be food, drinks, and games. It will be a great opportunity to meet other mentors as well as to bond with your mentee. We hope you can get parent / guardian permission for your mentee to attend with you; RSVP by April 14. Special thanks to sponsor First American Bank, and to our partners from the L.E.A.D. Athens Class of 2010-2011 Green Team.

Flip-Flop Into Reading

Have you ever heard of the “Summer Slide?” Many of our mentees have limited access to print materials during the summer, and this may affect their achievement in the following school year. The Clarke County Mentor Program has just received a carload of books from Books for Keeps ( UGA student Catherine Prater volunteered to organize the project. We notified our mentors about the possibility of books for mentees, and this week, Melaney Smith, Director of BFK, helped us select enough books so that 87 mentees – – from Kindergarten through high school – – will receive 2-3 books. Thanks, Books for Keeps!

Meet April and Autumn

April first met Autumn when she was student teaching (science) with Project Focus at Gaines Elementary School. By the end of the semester, a bond had formed, and one day Autumn asked April to be her mentor … and had the paperwork ready to sign! They have much in common and lots to talk about; still, April was very surprised when she asked Autumn what she wanted to be when she grew up and Autumn quickly replied “A pediatrician!” Because when April graduates from UGA in 2012, she hopes to be heading to medical school.

April and Autumn

Quick Facts

Our program recruits and trains volunteers to serve as mentors to students in all of our public schools, K-12 grade. They function primarily as friends. We ask for a minimum of one hour per week for one school year, with the opportunity to continue for multiple years.