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Nonprofit meets new crop of mentors

Nonprofit meets new crop of mentors
February 15
07:00 2018

Now more than ever, our young boys need a positive influence in their lives to help send them on a path to success in life.  The Triad Mentoring Coalition (TMC) connects willing mentors with at risk young men in effort to do just that.  They recently introduced their new mentors to their mentees at Ashley Elementary School.

For the past two years the TMC has worked in conjunction with Ashley to bring in new mentors from Winston-Salem State University (WSSU).  The mentors work with the kids for the entire semester.  The male students involved are from the fourth and fifth grade of the school.

“The program is set up to where we have revolving mentors and we are tied to them for the entire semester at Winston-Salem State,” said Rev. Dr. Lamonte Williams, founder of the TMC.  “The goal is for them to come and have an have an impact on the lives of the young men here.”

Williams says the partnership with WSSU was born when he connected with Dr. Dawn Tafari.  For the past two years the number of mentors has continued to grow.

“Each session we give them a template that they are supposed to use as a guide so in their interaction with the young men they are intentional in how they are shaping the conversation,” he continued.  “There is also a social aspect where they get to gain the confidence of the mentee so they can connect.”

Some of the young men involved in the program tend to get into minor disciplinary incidents at the school.  According to Williams, many of them have improved their behavior due to their involvement of their mentors.

“During the first semester, we had the program here one of the teachers stopped me in the hallway and asked me not to make this a ‘one shot wonder’ because of the transformation one young man has made in her classroom,” Williams said.

According to Williams said the chance to see their mentors is used as an incentive for the young men to not  misbehave in class.  He says over the first few years of the program that incentive has had its desired effect.

Williams says his hopes for the program is to set the young men on a correct path heading into their middle school years.  He feels the mentors gives the boys the means to be able to control their impulses by not acting out.

At the end of the semester, the school will hold a closing ceremony on the campus of WSSU to give the young men a taste of what it feels like to be on a college campus.  Williams also thinks this gives them something to aspire towards as they matriculate throughout school.

Mentors are not limited to only one semester if they choose.  Williams says the TMC has different tiers that allow the mentors to connect with their mentees for an extended period of time.

Williams is also hopeful that the program will be expanded to more schools throughout the district because of the positive impact it has had on the behavior of the young men.

“What we are hoping is at the end of this year we can have a discussion with the district about possibly having mentors come into other schools to improve the discipline of the young men there,” Williams said.

Williams wanted to give a special thank you to Pastor Donald Jenkins, senior pastor of St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, for providing transportation for the WSSU students.

For more information on the Triad Mentoring Coalition please contact Dr. Williams at revklwms@nullhotmail.com or visit the website at triadmentors.org.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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