M is for Mentoring

The acronym for my upcoming application represents the complexity of supporting and ultimately healing students who have experienced adverse childhood experiences (ACES) throughout their formative years. There are many apps to address a child’s various needs throughout their K-12 education, such as tutoring, communication, or even different teletherapy options. Still, none of them are multi-pronged and housed under one app to link communities like MNDYRR. It’s a weird way to spell mender, but I promise it will all come together to make sense sooner than later.

Menders are society’s healers. They come in the form of mentors, social workers, counselors, therapists, coaches, and teachers. In my autobiography, Broken Child Mended Man, I accredit my success to a community that refused to give up on me. In essence, it took a village to help me succeed when I was born and raised in unfortunate circumstances. As a successful product of the foster care system, the right people seemed to be in the right place at the right time. I was fortunate, but I also realized that countless others aren’t so lucky and may get lost in the systemic cracks. MNDYRR fills those communication gaps between parents/guardians, social workers, therapists, mentors, and teachers to ensure every child’s needs are met within their respective community. Still, what does MNDYRR stand for?

M is for mentoring. Although adults didn’t have all of the answers during my childhood, I knew it was helpful to go to the trusted ones when I needed advice. A shining national example, Big Brothers Big Sisters realized the importance of mentoring decades ago and why every child needs someone in their corner. Those interactions serve to develop the whole child, build self-esteem, and achieve better learning outcomes. Knowing someone to depend on to spend time with me proved invaluable to my development, and this continues to be the case for many of our nation’s children. The loneliness crisis has worsened as the pandemic has prolonged, but help is underway. The multifaceted student mentoring experience will look different under MNDYRR. Still, it will aim to achieve equitable access to address this widening problem and ensure each child receives the coveted human interaction.

Mentors will be the app’s foundation because an at-promise youth will need the village to step up to light their way. Mentors can come in the form of child advocates, volunteers, certified crisis intervention specialists, or tutors within the MNDYRR community. Everyone can serve in the capacity as long as they pass our extensive background check. While they will not have access to children’s personal health information (PHI) files, their volunteer status will be crucial to each MNDYRR student’s success. I can’t think of a more incredible hero than a role model who comes to a child’s aid. Join my mission to help build the better society we seek by making a generational commitment to each child’s success.

Keywords: #mentoring #childwelfare #ACES #app

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