Mass Mentoring Partnership is helping the New England Patriots celebrate Mentoring Week as part of their Celebrate Volunteerism campaign during the week of Oct. 26- Nov. 1. Through this campaign, we are able to highlight three partner programs from around the state, including Hyde Square Task Force, Children's Friend and Family Services, and the SMILES Mentoring Program. Additionally, mentor Lee Snitzer from SMILES has been named "Patriots Difference Maker of the Week," and a Patriots player will visit dozens of lucky mentors and mentees with SMILES at Kuss Middle School in Fall River.
About the Celebrate Volunteerism initiative
The Celebrate Volunteerism initiative aims to share examples of dedicated volunteers, build awareness of the need for volunteering, identify and educate others about volunteer opportunities and inspire New Englanders to follow the Kraft family's example of becoming a lifelong volunteer.
Throughout the season, the Kraft family and New England Patriots Charitable Foundation will celebrate volunteers that work tirelessly to support children and families in need throughout the New England region, while also encouraging Patriots fans to get involved in their communities. From animals and arts to military and homelessness, the foundation will have different weekly focuses throughout the season. Each week, the Kraft family and foundation recognizes one outstanding volunteer as the "Patriots Difference Maker of the Week."
About Hyde Square Task Force
The mission of Hyde Square Task Force (HSTF) is to build the skills of youth and their families so they are empowered to enhance their own lives and build a strong and vibrant urban community. HSTF works year-round with more than 120 youth, giving them the opportunity to build their personal leadership skills, creativity, and commitment to the community. Mentoring is an essential part of this process: each teen works one-on-one with a relatable adult mentor, with whom they have conversations about relevant issues, explore various college and career paths, and navigate the college exploration process.
About Children's Friend and Family Services
Children’s Friend and Family Services agency mission statement is "to improve the lives of children and to promote strong families.” The Children’s Friend Volunteer Youth Mentoring Program’s vision is to establish positive, healthy, and productive mentoring matches that will enhance the young person’s social, emotional, and educational outcomes. Why is volunteering for Children's Friend important?
- Children’s Friend Volunteer Youth Mentors connect mentees to new opportunities in their own community! With the support of many community partnerships, there is always something new to try, somewhere new to explore, or someone new to meet!
- Children’s Friend has been a continually operating non profit organization since 1837, which makes them experts in supporting the children and families of our communities. Mentors are trained to be a successful part of the agency legacy!
- Collectively, the 50 volunteer youth mentors at Children’s Friend provide almost 6,000 hours of volunteerism to North Shore and Merrimack Valley communities!
The mission of SMILES is to help at-risk youth realize their personal and academic potential through a large scale one-to-one mentoring program. Why is volunteering for SMILES important?
- Mentors offer support for education: Students who meet regularly with their mentors are 52 percent less likely than their peers to skip a day of school and 37 percent less likely to skip a class (Public/Private Ventures study of Big Brothers Big Sisters)
- Mentors offer support for day-to day challenges that youth face: Youth who meet regularly with their mentors are 46 percent less likely than their peers to start using illegal drugs and 27 percent less likely to start drinking (Public/Private Ventures study of Big Brothers Big Sisters)
- Mentors offer support in the workplace and with career planning: Mentors help young people set career goals and start taking steps to realize them
- Mentoring enhances academic success, improves workforce readiness, reduces juvenile crime, increases self-esteem, reveals new opportunities and career paths for youth, and strengthens communities. Mentors provide their mentees with an experienced friend who is there to support them in any number of situations.