Snuggled on the couch with two of my children, it was time to head off for my weekly visit to mentor my tween, Jen, who lives in a foster care group home.
This particular night, I questioned myself the entire thirty-minute drive. What kind of mother am I? Leaving my own kids to go and spend time with someone else’s? That is until I pulled in to the driveway and saw her peering out the front window eagerly awaiting my arrival.
In that instant, I knew that we must carve out time in our lives to love those who feel unloved.
Our own kids need and deserve our love, but they can’t be the only ones we are willing to give it to. When I saw the joy in Jen’s eyes as I walked to the door, I vowed never to question this purpose again.
Don’t use your family as an excuse for not caring for hurting people. Yes, I miss some time with my kids and husband to spend time with Jen. Thankfully, my children are deeply rooted in love from a wide community of family and friends, where unfortunately many are not. You don’t end up in a group home if you have any stable adult looking out for you.
What exactly is a mentor? A mentor is a person or friend who guides a less experienced person by building trust and modeling positive behaviors. If you have ever wondered if you are making a difference in your life, mentoring is an incredible way to do so.
At Jen’s most recent CFT (Child and Family Team) meeting, everyone involved in her case was raving about her heightened confidence and related all the positive change to our mentoring relationship. Wow.
The power of Mentoring is miraculous. None of us achieve success in life alone. I am slowly building trust with a girl who has no one she can count on in life that isn’t being paid to be there for her. She has been abused, neglected and beat down in her short years. I am humbled to provide her with new experiences while instilling hope for a brighter future, even if it means having to miss some family time once in awhile.
There are many young men and women in foster care who could really use someone like yourself to invest in them. Out of the 10 girls in the group home, Jen is the only one with a mentor. Are you willing to spread love through the gift of your presence?
I am a certified mentor through AASK. Check them out and join me in helping make a difference in the lives of some of our most vulnerable children!