We thought it would be fun to introduce some of our mentors so they can share more about who they are and their mentoring experiences.
Bridges mentors live in all parts of Mitchell County. Some have mentored since the programs began in 1999 while others have joined us recently. Our mentors range in age from young adults to those who are retired. Some choose to mentor by themselves while others mentor as a couple.
What these mentors all have in common is that they enjoy spending time with children and youth. Since we’re always in need of men or couples who are willing to mentor boys, we’ll introduce you to one of our male mentors, Craig.
Craig has been a mentor for two years. He and his family live in Osage. He coached sports for 10 years and is currently a State Farm Agent.
What motivated you to become a mentor?
I’ve always been involved in my children’s lives and enjoyed watching them grow. I felt like it was a good time to mentor when my kids went to college.
Kids need caring adults. Mentoring helps our community and keeps me in touch with youth.
What types of hobbies do you do for fun?
Watch Hawkeye games, fish, and bike.
What are your favorite things about summers in Mitchell County?
I enjoy all of the outdoor activities like canoeing, biking and hiking. I also enjoy Osage’s Friday Nights Out.
How do you and your mentee come up with ideas for activities?
Once you get to know your mentee, it’s easy to figure out what activities are compatible to both. We enjoy doing lots of outdoor activities like fishing on the river and trying new things.
How do you make time for mentoring?
We check in with each other about our schedules. For example, if I can’t meet during one week, we’ll meet longer the next time. Meeting can become tough as mentees become older, but there are many ways to connect such as talking on the phone or communicating through social media. Oftentimes, I invite my mentee to join me in everyday activities such as eating at Subway or coming over for dinner to eat with my family.
How has mentoring affected your life?
Mentoring has given me an opportunity to stay connected to youth. Oftentimes, my mentee’s friends will join us. I’ve been able to watch my mentee grow and see that mentoring is working. People see mentees as troubled youth, but they’re really just youth that need another adult contact.
What questions do you have for our mentors? Don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns.We’ll introduce you to another mentor soon.