Looking for a New Year’s resolution that betters yourself and someone else? You’re in luck, because January is National Mentoring Month. Mentoring a young person not only feels rewarding on a personal level today, it also means you’re helping to create a brighter tomorrow. Whether you volunteer to mentor someone through an official program or simply foster the growth of a younger coworker, here are five ways you can start mentoring this year.
1. Join Big Brothers Big Sisters
Through your local chapter of Big Brothers Big Sisters, you can change the life of a child facing adversity through mentorship and friendship. Whether you work with one child or start a workplace mentoring program, the experience is both enriching and rewarding. You can also support this wonderful organization with the Big and Little Dipper Set of Two, the perfect gift for you and your little!
2. Volunteer with a Smaller Community Group
Google the words “mentoring” and your zip code, and voilà — you’ll find out about opportunities right in your town that you may not have been aware of. These smaller organizations often need extra hands and will be all the more grateful to hear you’re interested in pitching in. Be willing to roll up your sleeves in several ways and you’ll find you’re making an impact on not just your mentee, but on the group as a whole – that’s something you can be extra proud of.
3. Work with the Girl Scouts
Even if you were never a scout yourself, you can be a troop co-leader or take on a seasonal or camp volunteer role with the Girl Scouts. The organization just added new badges related to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), which build not only scouts’ knowledge, but even more importantly, their confidence and leadership skills. As you lift up a girl in your own community, you can help another mentor in a faraway place do the same by purchasing an Inspiration in Flight Expandable Necklace – part of the proceeds are donated to Flying Kites, an organization that provides education to critically-poor children in Kenya.
4. Mentor Through Your Professional Organization
Many professional organizations have mentorship programs, where you can share the wisdom you’ve gained along your own career path with someone else to help them soar. And don’t think of it as a one-way street, either: Your mentee may have knowledge in an area where you need to build skills yourself, so be open to a “reverse” mentoring situation, and you’ll find it’s a win-win.
5. Look Out for a Coworker
Whether you had a work mentor yourself or not, now is your chance to help someone else grow. If you see potential in someone you work with, invite them to coffee, share stories of your own successes and failures, and let them know they can come to you if they need career advice. As you earn your wings as someone’s career guardian angel, proudly wear a Guardian Angel Charm Bangle.
Written by Mandy Carr