WAHOO – The new school year is in full swing and an area organization would like to bring a few more people to the schools.
Wahoo Community TeamMates, the mentoring program that serves Wahoo Middle and High Schools, St. Wenceslaus Grade School and Bishop Neumann Junior/Senior, wants to recruit more mentors.
Wahoo Community TeamMates Coordinator John Harris said the goal is to have 75 mentor-mentee pairings in the schools. Prior to the start of the school year, there were about 60 pairings.
TeamMates is a program that matches adults with a student in school. The mentors are asked to spend an hour a week with the mentees.
Harris said this session is done during the school day and always at the school.
The program is about providing another adult role model in a kid’s life.
“It’s a relationship,” he said. “It gives that young person yet another opportunity to learn and talk with someone.”
The hour session can be spent however the mentor-mentee choose. Talking, helping with homework, playing games or listening to music are among the activities that can take place.
“Kids look forward to their mentors coming in,” he added.
The Wahoo Community TeamMates board is trying to bring more awareness to the program.
The Wahoo chapter was formed shortly after a county-wide chapter was disbanded.
Harris said the local chapter started small but continues to build.
One aspect of the TeamMates program is a scholarship opportunity for students who start with a mentor in the younger grades and then continue on until graduation.
Harris said four or five college scholarships have been awarded in past years, but there is the potential to give out 11 this year. Next year, that number could grow to 16.
“Our numbers are getting bigger,” he said.
Still, more students could be paired with a mentor.
Harris said there is a screening process for mentors and also a matching process to be sure the pairing with the student is a good fit.
For more information, contact Harris at Wahoo Public Schools or visit the TeamMates website at teammates.org.
If interesting in becoming a mentor, an application is available on the website.