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  • Writer's pictureYolanda Chisolm


Youth program introduces mentoring to further support and increase positive outcomes

NCWorks NextGen TRANSFORMe Mentoring Kickoff
NCWorks NextGen TRANSFORMe Mentoring Kickoff (Photo Credit: Ashley Carter and Crystal Taylor)

On Monday, January 14, 2019, the Durham Board of Commissioners issued a Proclamation in Recognition of January as National Mentoring Month. National Mentoring Month focuses attention on #youth #mentoring, the need for mentors, and how the community can work together to assure positive outcomes for our young people.

No matter what, keep going... don't stop! ~Ms. Kezia Goodwin, Urban Ministries

Mentoring Session Inspires Youth

Mentoring is a critical component in young people’s lives, helping them make the decisions and connections that lead to improved opportunities. #NCWorks #NextGen understands how valuable mentoring is and on last Thursday, kicked off our new mentoring program -- TRANSFORMe. The purpose of this kickoff was to initiate a dialogue on the importance of quality mentoring programs and to recruit volunteer mentors.

During the kickoff, there were approximately 25 youth in attendance. The guys had an opportunity to speak with and network with Dr. Harvey Hinton, Assistant Executive Director of Healing with CAARE; Mr. Keijuane Hester, Owner of Favor Desserts; Steven Cannady, Mentoring Coordinator at Bull City Youth Build; Adrian L'Esperance, Workforce Development Manager at Urban Ministries; and DeWarren Langley, Executive Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Foundation. In a separate breakout session, the ladies were able to connect with Mrs. Tara Evans, Owner of Southern Sugah, and Ms. Kezia Goodwin, Operations Director at Urban Ministries.

Both groups listened to these mentors’ personal stories on how they were able to get to where they are today and how mentoring positively impacted their lives. From there, youth were able to share their stories and ask questions in a safe space. They asked a lot of great questions about prison life, homelessness, foster care, absent parents, careers aspirations and entrepreneurship. Many of the youth walked away with a relatable experience, great advice, information and a desire to have more mentoring sessions. As a next step, youth will receive opportunities for both one-on-one and group mentoring sessions.

Many thanks to Dr. Hinton, Mr. Hester, Mr. Cannady, Mr. L'Esperance, Mr. Langley, Mrs. Evans and Ms. Goodwin for sharing and caring about our youth.

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