As we wrap up Mentoring Month, we take this time to reflect on our incredible volunteers and what they have provided to not only the children we serve but our agency, and most importantly the community. We feel inspired by our mentors and the positive effort they put forth to make a difference in children’s lives.
Rita Pierson once said “Every child deserves a champion—an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection, and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be.”
Pierson, who passed away in 2013, was an educator for 40 years, and I believe her words encompass so well what it means to be a mentor in a child’s life. When I think about her words, I think about mentors like Blaine McNutt.
Blaine first started as a mentor with us back in 1984, when he was matched with Jason. They were matched for six years, until Jason graduated from the program. From the time Jason was young he loved to help Blaine work on cars. He would watch Blaine, and join in when he could. Jason was clearly inspired by Blaine’s passion, as he went on to work in mechanics when he got older. This is the magic of mentoring.
Jason and Blaine remain friends today and stay in touch quite often.
Fast forward to 2013 and Blaine had three grown sons of his own and was keen to get back involved with the agency. He was introduced to Alex who was nine years old at the time. Blaine and Alex hit it off right away. Over the years Blaine has taught Alex how to play pool and Alex has taught Blaine lots about technology, among many other things. Blaine said he feels like he’s constantly learning.
“What I enjoy most about spending time with Alex is the friendship. Alex is able to talk freely with me, and I love knowing that he feels comfortable sharing his thoughts, feelings and simply just sharing his day-to-day happenings. We have a relationship that is based on trust and I think that’s important,” stated Blaine with a smile.
Over the years they’ve enjoyed going to the fire hall where Blaine volunteers. What started out as place where Alex could admire and explore the trucks has become a familiar and fun place where they play pool, air hockey and shuffle board. Blaine shared that although he taught Alex how to play pool, Alex is now good enough to beat him! When they aren’t at the fire hall they enjoy going for drives, going to the beach or for a bike ride. They love to stay active.
Alex says that he’s always excited to spend time with Blaine and he always feels comfortable and safe.
Blaine, we want to take this time to thank you for being an incredible male mentor for young men. You share your passions, live by example, and you’re a champion for Alex, as you were for Jason. We hope that we will be able to continue sharing stories just like yours as we make our way through the next 40 years as an agency.
We still have many children on our waitlist who are in need of a mentor just like Blaine. To learn more about how to become a mentor with BBBS visit our website www.colchesterkids.ca or give us a call at 902-895-4562.