Thursday, October 18, 2012

Mentors Matter in Pottawatomie County

On October 17th, United Way of Pottawatomie County hosted "A Cup of Joe & A Donut Hole," a cordial and fun come-and-go for its recently developed Mentors Matter initiative.

Mentors Matter will work with mentoring organizations in Pottawatomie County to increase their capacity and recruit qualified mentors.  We envision a community where every child at risk of not achieving their full potential will be matched with a caring adult mentor.

Michael Shaw, United Way board member, vice drive chair, and Shawnee businessman, is the impassioned leader of this program.  For a few years, Michael not only worked in Tulsa but participated in Tulsa Public Schools' College Access, Career Readiness, sponsored by Tulsa Metro Chamber and The Higher Ed Forum.  In that program, a CACR coach goes into the classroom twice a month to work with students on career pathways, choices, and post-secondary options.  What Shaw learned and saw in Tulsa became a catalyst for increasing mentoring in the Shawnee area.

Pictured above at the breakfast are Larry Gill, Michael Shaw and Audrey Seeliger--with doughnut holes and gallons of coffee!

Shaw and Seeliger, director of the United Way of Pottawatomie County, launched a needs assessment, community survey, and a solution--Mentors Matter.

See more. 

Mentors Matter next will host a hotdog dinner at Oklahoma Baptist University to create awareness and recruit mentors.

Congratulations to Seeliger, Shaw, and others in United Way for their efforts to transform Pottawatomie County youth through mentoring, a method research proves helps mentees academically, socially and emotionally.

Attending the event from the Avedis Foundation are Paula Waters, program director; Michelle Briggs, executive director; and Brooke Webb, administrative assistant.       
Not photographed here but essential was attendee Cyndi Munson, community programs manager for the Girl Scouts of Western Oklahoma, who told Beverly at the Boren Mentoring Initiative about this event.  Ah, the power of networking...
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