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Posts Tagged ‘children’

I recently completed an alarming but beneficial training on how to identify child sexual abuse.  The organization is D2L and their mission is to “To Empower People to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse.”

I walked away from that training with these words ringing in my ear. Who is listening to the voice of our children? Who will speak up for our children? If adults won’t or can’t do it, who will?

Then I was reminded of the chorus of Yolanda Adams’s song “What About the Children” that says,

What about the children
To ignore is so easy
So many innocent children will choose the wrong way
So what about the children
Remember when we were children
And if not for those who loved us and who cared enough to show us
Where would we be today

As the lyrics say, “and if not for those who loved us and who cared enough to show us, where would be today.”  Let’s give our children the chance to experience a childhood filled with laughter, lots of fun, and an environment that allows them to dream!

No matter our role (parent, educator, nurse, coach, etc.), we have an obligation to protect our children from those whose agenda is to take advantage of our youth.

Let’s use our intuition and if something doesn’t appear as it seems, or policies are being compromised, let’s make the conscious choice to speak on behalf of children.

They are counting on us to be their voice.

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In the business world, it is not uncommon to hear employees who work in a leadership capacity discuss mentors who were significant in helping them build their careers.

They identified their career goals and were coached on not only what job opportunities to consider, but how to navigate within an organization.

I have had numerous mentors throughout my life. One of them is the reason that I returned to college to earn my Masters of Science in Management and currently serve as a CEO. His insight was invaluable to me. He identified untapped strengths in me and complimented my natural business acumen.

There are several benefits to having a mentor. One in particular is that when you’re charting unfamiliar territory in your personal and/or professional life, someone who has been down that path can point out challenges and “wins” on your journey. They also provide an unbiased perspective to situations and circumstances based on their own professional experiences.

In addition to the guidance that a mentor provides a mentee, there can also be a great sense of accomplishment by helping someone reach their goals.

I recently read an article by Sara Afzal who shared a Boston Globe story written by Billy Baker. In the article, Baker shared how he met and subsequently mentored two underprivileged brothers who attended Boston’s Latin School. In spite of the challenges of their upbringing, one of the brothers was accepted to Yale. This is a great example of what can be achieved when you have a mentor guiding and empowering you to reach your potential.

If you are asking yourself what it takes to be a mentor, I think it takes an interest in helping others and a willingness to be open and honest about your journey. When mentoring children, confidentiality and being able to see the less-than-obvious abilities in a child is “key.” Identifying an untapped skill or helping the child understand that making a bad decision doesn’t define who they are is important.

I know many well-established successful people, who did not have mentors. They set their sights on their goal, met challenges head-on, and didn’t stop until their goal was realized. The irony is while they did not have mentors; they saw the benefits of mentoring and chose to mentor others.

In observance of National Mentoring Month, take a moment and consider what skills, abilities or life’s lessons have you learned that you can share with someone charting a similar path.

“When a young person, even a gifted one, grows up without proximate living examples of what she may aspire to become–whether lawyer, scientist, artist, or leader in any realm–her goal remains abstract. Such models as appear in books or on the news, however inspiring or revered, are ultimately too remote to be real, let alone influential. But a role model in the flesh provides more than inspiration; his or her very existence is confirmation of possibilities one may have every reason to doubt, saying, ‘Yes, someone like me can do this.”  ~Sonia Sotomayor

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