Oxford Educational Foundation marks National Mentoring Month
January is National Mentoring Month and the Oxford Educational Foundation is taking the opportunity to highlight the importance of mentoring. Since 1995, the Oxford Educational Foundation has been operating a mentoring program, placing hundreds of mentors in the Oxford schools. Mentors are meeting with their students with the expectation of developing an ongoing relationship that is positive and caring.
“Research shows that mentoring is linked to improved academic, social, and economic prospects for young people, and that ultimately strengthens our community,” said Dr. Raymond A, Fischer, the Oxford Educational Foundation executive director
Mentors can play a powerful role in providing young people with the tools to make responsible decisions and to stay focused and engaged in school.
The program’s impact on individual students can be noticed in the child’s increased school attendance and academic success, decreased discipline referrals, and improvements in social skills.
Working as a mentor positively affects the lives of the mentors, as well. Mentors have reported a sense of satisfaction in recognizing that they can make a difference. Although the program is not a cure-all for the needs and challenges of today’s youth, it can provide a meaningful, positive relationship in the life of a child who otherwise may receive very little encouragement. These children need to know there is someone to whom they can turn not only when they have a problem, but also to share a success.
As the Oxford Educational Foundation focuses on engaging more community members in volunteering, they share a simple message: Mentors make a difference.
If you know of anyone who could give an hour or two a week to serve as a mentor, please contact the Oxford Educational Foundation’s volunteer coordinator, Kim Lewin at [email protected] or Dr. Ray Fischer, the executive director, at [email protected].