When you were little, did you ever have an experience that changed your path in life?

When I was probably under ten years old I was able to job shadow a real archeologist. I was SO excited. I had read books on Egypt, The Mayans, and Aztecs, dreamed of one day climbing to the top of Machu Picchu, and discover never seen before ruins once I became an archeologist too.

I remember my job shadower worked at the local college as a professor and as we were looking at cool bones and going over lesson plans he casually says, "You know, you really shouldn't become an archeologist. Most of us never make it into the field digging for stuff, you'll probably just end up having to take a job like this." I was shocked. I mean he was being honest, but too honest? Instead of buckling down and writing a letter to the great Egyptian Archeologist Zahi Hawass about my hopes and dreams. I nodded my head and put aside thoughts of becoming an archeologist.

Words matter and I always wondered what would have happened had that professor encouraged my passion instead of giving me a reality check. Not even sure if calling what happened was really a reality check because as an adult I know this person was venting about their own dreams and not achieving them.

I know I have a lot to learn but I've decided to become a mentor with Safe Yakima Valley! One hour a week I will commit to being, "that person" for a child in our community who doesn't have a stable person to speak with. It's a program that's gearing up and they are in need of female and male mentors. If this is something you're interested in or have a child that you would love to connect with a mentor REACH OUT. Words matter but actions do too!

If you’d like to learn more about being a mentor and joining a vibrant group of people, working to make a measurable difference for our youth, please reach out to Karelys Davis at SafeMentoring@yakima.org.

Become a mentor and change lives

Mentor Kelsie and mentee Jade. They meet once a week to talk and share an activity together and have played tennis, gone to the mall, enjoyed coffee, taken a walk, ordered ice cream, and even just ran errands. Spending time with Kelsie has been so valuable to Jade that now her siblings have requested their own mentors.

 

Jade says that Kelsie is someone who listens to her talk about school, and gives her great advice. When asked about something she learned from her mentor, Jade said she learned that “it’s okay to be sad and talk about it.” She said that Kelsie helps her process life and find solutions to her challenges.

KEEP READING: 50 activities to keep kids busy this summer