AS REPORTED IN THE LUFKIN DAILY NEWS:
Sometimes a friendly push in the right direction can make a world of difference in the eyes of an at-risk child. Lufkin teenagers now receive positive encouragement and friendship through the Goodguides mentor program.
With 30 Angelina County children still on the waiting list to be matched with a mentor, program manager Kristy Bice hopes to bring more attention to the relatively new program during National Mentoring Month.
The program, operated through Goodwill Industries in Lufkin, began in January 2010, Bice said.
Mentors spend four hours minimum each month with students 12- through 17-years-old. Sixty-two matches have been made this year, and Bice hopes for more as the program continues to grow.
“People think they don’t have time to be a mentor,” Bice said. “It boils down to letting the youth know they’re worthy, and there are opportunities out there available to them even if someone says there’s not.”
Funded through a grant by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Deliquency Prevention, a U.S. Department of Justice program, the kids and their mentors build career plans and skills, focus on post-secondary education and try to increase school attendance, Bice said.
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