Bridges Mentoring & the Covid-19 Pandemic

Hello mentors, mentees, parents, donors and community members.

It’s good!  It’s good to see children running through the school doors, with their masks, back packs and water bottles in tow. It’s good to have ability to re-plan and reorganize. It’s especially good to re-examine the how and why of what we are doing here at Bridges Mentoring. It sometimes takes a real effort, but I try to put the worries and negative news in its place and focus on the things I can do.

The Covid-19 pandemic has had an incredible impact on humanity as a result of the devastating effects on health and those stemming from social distancing measures.  All in-person mentoring continues to be suspended until further notice. We realize that this is a different and difficult time for everyone. While our mentee’s look forward to spending time with their mentors, as a community we need everyone to do what we can to slow the spread of Covid-19.  Little by little, the state has gone through an influx of safety measures. Thankfully Mitchell County Public Health has been on top of the situation.  For now, we are finding new ways to engage in things that are comforting. While we have grieved the loss of the familiar, I am more appreciative of what we have. There is an excitement that is hard to put a finger onto re-planning familiar things in a new way. Perhaps it adds a sense of adventure that ultimately we really can figure out how to have the connections we need.

What are we doing here at Bridges Mentoring?  In spite of social distancing, mentors are still making contact with their mentees. Just in a new format. Some have been reading together via face-time, sending letters, care packages and much more. Here, we are wrestling with the how-tos. How do we maintain and support mentoring relationships in the midst of social distancing? How do we reach out to establish new mentoring relationships now? What about our activities, our fundraisers, our trainings? There have been a lot of questions and not a lot of solid answers but there have also been a number of fresh, new ideas. Some of our old activities have been put on standby and some new ideas are formulating.

What will the rest of our year look like? We aren’t sure, but we will be here. We are looking forward with a bit of sense of renewal and refreshing from the changes, even though it is hard. We look forward knowing that there is still a great need for mentors in our area. We look forward to serving children and families who may have had very adverse experiences during the lockdown, as well as those who were less affected. We look forward to re-planned events. We look forward with gratefulness in our hearts, knowing that our community recognizes our value. We look forward to sharing our new ideas with you soon. Thank you mentors for all you do!

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