• 50°

Take a part in mentoring

January marks National Mentoring Month across the United States, and locally, there’s no better way to give back to the community than to spend a little time helping young people in our area.

In the ever-changing world that we live in dominated by so much negative news and misfortune — driven by social media and the concept of instant gratification — there’s a growing need to guide the young people of our communities in the right direction.

Our communities — through school activities and civic organizations — offer numerous ways that adults can give back through donating time, wisdom and advice to our youth.

According to the National Mentoring Month website, nine million children in America are in need of more guidance in life.

A fine example is the partnership forged between the Cumberland County 4-H program and the Cumberland County Middle School, which has resulted in the development of the 4-H Mentoring: Youth and Families with Promise program.

The program allows members of the community — real mentors — to spend time with middle schools students identified as potentially vulnerable, whether it’s socially or academically. 

According to Yvonne Earvin, a 4-H mentor educator who supervises the mentoring, adults meet with the students at the middle school once a week after school to discuss social issues and perform activities.

The mentoring program has created the opportunity to coordinate activities for students when school is out in the summer, she said.

Other localities and school divisions should take note of Cumberland’s work and look to benefit their youth similarly.

Jordan Miles is managing editor of The Farmville Herald. His email address is jordan.miles@farmvilleherald.com.