Thanks to MENTOR National Health and the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, January became National Mentoring Month in 2002. National Mentoring Month has three focuses: to raise awareness of mentoring and the need for mentors, to recruit individuals to mentor, particularly in areas where there is a waiting list, and to promote the growth of mentoring. But what is a mentor? A mentor is defined as an experienced and trusted adviser. To help interested individuals turn their concern for people into direct action, communities often hold special events that are supported by the local media and public officials.
Mentoring has become increasingly important in the last year as the world deals with the Covid-19 pandemic. Human connections are the foundation of mentoring, and the pandemic has made these connections challenging while showing the importance of mentoring programs. One group that is represented in almost every mentoring program in the country is LGBTQ youth. Constantly exposed to bias, stigma, and victimization, they have specific needs that service providers and mentors must work to address.
There are similar needs amongst those struggling with mental health disorders. It takes a special mentor to foster resilience and strengthen social, emotional, and cognitive skills. Mentoring fills a void that can prevent the escalation of mental health concerns by allowing mentors and mentees to recognize that other people go through similar issues. Being listened to and supported by another person who understands the variety of stresses that someone is under normalizes the experiences and allows for deep discussion to develop different coping mechanisms.
Everyone needs and deserves a one-to-one relationship with a caring adult and a safe place to learn and grow. Our office is available and prepared to invest in all our patients’ wellness promotion, prevention, treatment, and recovery. Please contact us to determine if our practice will be a good fit for you.