News

What’s an easy way to get involved with Youth First Mentoring? Subscribe to our News Feed. You’ll learn about fun events, the adventures of our mentor pairs, and ways you can help Youth First support the young people of Central Vermont.

Most Recent Posts:

Ice Cream Social for Mentors, Mentees & Families

It felt so amazing to gather in Hubbard Park for an Ice Cream Social with mentors, mentees and families! We played with big bubbles and balloon animals, had a game of Bocce going, and gave away free books for summer reading. (Thank you, Bear Pond Books!) Thank you to...

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Three Penny Taproom Fundraiser for Mentoring

Thursday, May 19th, 2022 Please gather your friends and family to dine out at Three Penny Taproom on Thursday, May 19th to support children in Vermont and Girls/Boyz First Mentoring. We're thrilled to have the support of Three Penny, who will donate a portion of...

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Sugar on Snow (and Pickles!)

Rugged Ridge Forest owner, Josh Seidman, gave us a tour of his sugarworks in Worcester over the weekend. It was amazing to make our own sugar on snow from syrup that came from the trees and land we were standing on. And, of course, we paired the gooey sweet amazing...

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In The News:

Want to Leave a Legacy? Be A Mentor

Encouraged by a grandfatherly professor at Cornell, in my sophomore year I gave a speech asking my fellow students “when you come to the end of your days, will you be able to write your own epitaph?”

I urged them to focus on establishing meaningful goals and the legacy they may want to leave when their physical lives end.

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Mentoring Programs Help Vermont Youths But Desperately Need Volunteers

It doesn’t take long to peg Hunter Townsend and Alex Gordon as old friends. It’s clear in the way they reminisce, stumbling over details blurred by time, and in how comfortable they are pushing each other to try new things. A couple of years ago, the two flew in a small, single-engine plane, the adventurous Alex at the helm (alongside an instructor), the heights-averse Hunter sweating in the back.

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With A Little Help From A Friend

“I’m a fan of kids,” says Kim Smith, the new director of Girls Boyz First. “And I have a special place in my heart for kids who struggle.” On this day, she’s wearing sneakers with bright rainbow-colored laces. It’s easy to sense that kids are also fans of Smith. In her role as the mentoring program’s director, she works to pair local kids with adult mentors. The carefully screened mentor will become another adult for a mentee to talk to, learn from, and help them pursue their individual interests.

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Vermont Conversations: Mentors And Youth Tackle Challenges Together

As the Covid-19 pandemic enters its third year, its impacts have fallen especially hard on young people. In December 2021, the U.S. Surgeon General warned of “devastating” mental health effects on youth, noting that there were significant increases in self-reports of depression, anxiety and a 51% increase in emergency room visits for suicide attempts by adolescent girls in early 2021.

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Why All Teenagers Need Non-Parent Mentors

Many adults look to their pasts and recall the profound influence a mentor had on their lives during adolescence. Whether it was a teacher, neighbor, clergy member, or sports coach, having the one-on-one support of a caring adult who is not a parent can yield positive, life-changing outcomes. Why is it important to be mentored during the teen years? How do teenagers find the right mentors?

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‘I Know I’m Not Alone’: The Importance of Mentors Right Now

Last May, a 17-year-old from Queens lost his father, an essential worker, to Covid-19. For six months, the shy and soft-wpoken teenager, whose name is Ansh and whose last name is being withheld for privacy, hardly left the on-bedroom apartment he shares with his mother in Astoria. “I felt so alone,” Ansh said. “I didn’t feel like anyone was there to support me, and I really needed someone who would.”

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95% Of Teachers Say Mentors Make A Difference For Students

A vast majority of educators – 95% – say every student can benefit from having a one-on-one mentor, according to a recent survey of 1,418 grade 4-12 teachers from nonprofit Gradient Learning. Additionally, 82% said mentoring improves academic outcomes, and 83% said it helps students learn skills that support success.

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“Being involved with Youth First Mentoring has been a really rewarding experience to connect with a young person by helping them realize their potential, by being a source of information and advice, and serving as a trusted friend who will be there for them for encouragement and support.”