Mount Olive Baptist Church
Thursday, October 08, 2015

Mentor: (noun) a trusted counselor or guide

"Teach be be do what is good...these are the things you should teach
." Titus 2 (NIV)

(A letter of appreciation from Darlene Miller, a previous principal of Mount Olive Elementary School)

Dear Members of Mount Olive Baptist Church,

Once again, words seem inadequate to properly express the gratitude we feel for your members' involvement with our students last year in our mentoring program. Our children's lives have continued to truly be blessed with your outreach of your time, talent, and love. Every child who was assigned a mentor has felt your impact on their lives, and we continue to see students make a huge "turn-around" in their attitudes toward school and toward other people. Sometimes it may seem that you are not making a difference, but we may never truly know or understand the impact of your influence or how long lasting it will be because the fruits will be evident later in the children's lives. Remember that your presence, not presents, is what is needed most by our children! I am thankful every single day for the time you give and the influence you have on our children.

We hope you will continue to work with us this school year in our mentoring program. We will be having an orientation meeting early in September to answer questions and orient everyone to the mission of our mentoring program. Please prayerfully consider whether or not you can be that special someone this year for one of our most deserving children. Building positive relationships with children who may not have very many adults they can relate to is one of the most rewarding jobs you will ever have.

If you would like to help our students but committing to a weekly visit and relationship with one child is more than you can manage in your schedule, we are also desperately needing tutors who could commit to coming once or twice a month for an hour or two (your choice as to how often and how long). Please contact me at our school to volunteer. We will be making a volunteer schedule in August. Another need that we have is for someone to instruct our chess club. Students meet every Wednesday afternoon from 2:45 - 4:00 p.m. Parents help chaperon the children, but we need volunteers to provide chess instruction. If this sounds like something you could do, please let us know! We welcome your help in any way.

Again, I thank your church family for all of your support and participation last year. I hope to see you and meet new members this year as we continue our endeavor to nurture, teach, and love all of our children.

Darlene Miller

There are three ways to participate in the mentor program:
1. By prayer - It is best to have a prayer partner for each family member and student.
2. By provisions - Some students do not have the financial resources to participate in special activities or to have the necessary supplies. Your monetary gift would go a long way in providing for them.
3. By presence - Caring, loving adults are needed to spend time with elementary students, K-5th grade, each week. Reading books, playing games, talking and even eating lunch are a few of the activities you will participate in as a mentor. Each of us has special gifts, talents, and life experiences that, when shared, could make a difference in a child's life. Some of these children desperately need a positive role model in their lives. A once-a-week special time spent with them could make a difference in their young lives. 
1. How much time do I need to commit? You may spend as much time as you have, as long as you are consistent. Most mentors spend one hour per week. Thirty mi
nutes would probably be the least amount of time recommended.

2. Where do we spend our time with the children? There are many places around the school where you could spend time with your child: the library, cafeteria, hallway, outside, etc. Any place you can find a quiet spot to share special time together is fine.

3. Can I just be a prayer partner? Yes. We need plenty of pray for the students, their families, and the staff.

4. Can I work with more than one child? You are welcome to work with more than one child at different times. We do limit the mentor experience to a one-on-one relationship. The children that will be involved in the mentor program are in need of individualized attention.

5. How will I know what to do? An introductory meeting will be held the first of September where you will be given pointers and information on your child. .