DECORAH, IOWA The eleventh annual National Mentoring Month is being celebrated during the month of January in communities throughout the nation. The goals of National Mentoring Month are to raise awareness of mentoring in its various forms, to recruit individuals to become involved in formal mentoring programs, and to promote the rapid growth of mentoring.
Mentoring provides a positive adult role model for youth. A 1995 Private Ventures study showed that mentored youth have improved relationships with other family members, a better attitude towards school, are less likely to use alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs, and report a decrease in violent behaivor. One parent with a youth in the Mentoring Programs at Helping Services shared, “My children fight less since they began with their mentors.”
There are many exciting events planned by MY Club, Howard County’s community-based mentoring program through Helping Services for Northeast Iowa.
On January 16, the Howard County Board of Supervisors along with mentors, and other community supporters will sign a proclamation stating that January 2012 is National Mentoring Month. Everyone who supports mentoring is encouraged to attend the proclamation signing at 10:00 a.m. in the County Board of Supervisor’s room in the courthouse.
Come and check out our mentoring displays at the Lime Springs and Cresco Public Libraries and the Cresco Chamber of Commerce. Find out more about what’s happening with mentoring and how to get involved in mentoring in your community. Posters, table tents, and placemats promoting mentoring will be in area businesses, churches, and libraries.
A sledding party takes place on Saturday, January 7th in Fayette at the home of Dave and Sue Runyon. Mentees, mentors, Mentors For A Day, and youth ready for a mentor from Howard County are invited to attend from 1:30-3:30 p.m. The event will include sledding time, horse-drawn sleigh rides, cocoa and s’mores. If you’d like to help out, contact Helping Services to find out about Mentor For A Day options.
Mentors in mentoring programs at Helping Services spend 4-5 hours per month with their youth doing activities such as: working on a car, fishing, going on a walk, sledding, or going to movies. Matches are made based on the similar interests of the youth and adult friend. Youth in the program do not have to meet any special criteria other than to live in the county.
Helping Services for Northeast Iowa is a not-for-profit agency that promotes the health and well-being of children and adults living in our service area. The agency focuses resources on substance abuse, child abuse, domestic violence and sexual abuse prevention. Staff provide presentations, research-based programs, mentoring coordination, trainings and advocacy. Helping Services works with community members to help create environments that are safe, nurturing and healthy. For more information on how to come involved in mentoring, contact Kathy or Marilyn (563) 387-1720 or visit