News Release: City of Greensboro and United Way Seek to Engage Volunteers during National Mentoring Month

CONTACT: Carla Banks
City of Greensboro
Phone 336-373-3769

CONTACT: Michael Cottingham
United Way of Greater Greensboro
Phone: 336-378-6617
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

City of Greensboro and United Way Seek to Engage Volunteers
during National Mentoring Month

Greensboro, NC (January 11, 2018) – January is National Mentoring Month, and this year the City of Greensboro and United Way of Greater Greensboro are celebrating 16 years of the mentoring movement and expanding quality mentoring opportunities in support of the new Greensboro Youth Employment & Mentoring (GYEM) initiative.

This is an opportunity to connect more of our community’s young people to mentoring programs and develop pathways for youth employment throughout the city of Greensboro.

The City is partnering with United Way’s Mentoring Matters initiative to increase the number of mentors and improve the effectiveness of mentoring programs in the greater Greensboro area.

“Over the past 16 years, the mentoring movement has gained tremendous momentum, in large part due to the establishment of National Mentoring Month. Mentoring is a critical part of developing life changing relationships – mentoring is proven to have a positive effect on academic, social, and economic outcomes for our young people,” said Mayor Nancy Vaughan.

Kennedy is smart, funny, likes to play on her cellphone and does not like to read. She would soar if given the chance to meet with a mentor to help her focus on her future. Michelle Gethers-Clark, President and CEO of United Way of Greater Greensboro says, “Each of us has the power to truly impact the future for our youth by simply being a caring adult in their life as a friend and mentor.”​

Research shows mentors can play a powerful role in providing youngsters with the tools to make responsible choices, attend and excel in school, and reduce or avoid risky behavior like gang activity or drug use.

In turn, young people who are mentored are:

· 55 percent more likely to be enrolled in college

· 81 percent more likely to report participating regularly in sports or extracurricular activities

· 78 percent more likely to volunteer regularly in their communities

· More than twice as likely to say they held a leadership position in a club or sports team

Yet, the same research shows that nine million young people in our country will grow up without a mentor. National Mentoring Month, each January, allows for unique engagement from community members interested in becoming a mentor. This year, with the support of the mentoring community, we are encouraging the public to go beyond just digital engagement – and become involved in making a real-life impact.

Mentoring relationships are at their best when connections are made between a caring adult and a young person who knows that someone is there to help guide them through those real-life decisions. Pledge to be a mentor today, by contacting the United Way of Greater Greensboro.

Other important dates and activities of National Mentoring Month include:

January 15, 2018: Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service
A day to share in the inspirational words of MLK, Jr., and elevate the spirit of service through volunteerism.

January 17, 2018: International Mentoring Day
A day of international conversations on social media where photos, video and messages to share powerful mentoring stories.

January 25, 2018: “Thank Your Mentor Day”

A day for all who have real life mentoring experiences to thank those who helped them on their path to adulthood and beyond when we encourage anyone who has had a mentor to say thank you by sending a note, a card or sharing a story on social media using #MentorIRL.

To learn more about the role mentoring plays in our community and to find volunteer opportunities, visit http://www.unitedwaygso.org/mentoring-matters/

About National Mentoring Month
National Mentoring Month is led by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, with support from the Highland Street Foundation. Each year since its launch in 2002, National Mentoring Month has enjoyed the strong support of the President and the United States Congress.

Other prominent individuals who have participated in the campaign include: Maya Angelou, former Presidents Barak Obama and Bill Clinton, Clint Eastwood, Quincy Jones, Cal Ripken Jr., Bill Russell and Usher.

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United Way of Greater Greensboro is celebrating 95 years: 1922 – 2017. We fight for the opportunity, prosperity and future of every person in greater Greensboro by creating partnerships that reduce poverty. We bring together dynamic and caring professionals and volunteers who teach, coach and inspire the 57,000 people in our community living in poverty. With so many of our neighbors struggling to become self-sufficient, United Way believes poverty must be replaced with sustainable solutions that meet the unique needs of children, adults and ENTIRE families. www.unitedwaygso.org

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