“My favourite thing about mentoring is that I am able to assist children who are currently experiencing similar marginalisation, financial hardship and social barriers that I faced when I was young. It is truly gratifying to know that as a mentor, I have the potential to not only nurture these children and see them flourish, but to also positively change a social problem”.
These are the words of Tony — a RMCC mentor and friend who’s been a familiar face in one of our programs for the past 7 months.
At RMCC, it’s safe to say we’d be lost without our incredible, generous mentors, who donate their spare time and energy to stand by our goal of ensuring no refugee or migrant child slips through the cracks.
They do this by guiding and supporting their mentees in developing knowledge, skills and confidence that will allow them to fully engage in their education and feel a greater part of their community.
To date, we have successfully supported 650 children through our range of programs, which includes Sidekicks Junior and Sidekicks Senior, Family Learning Clubs, school holiday programs and life skill workshops.
And we don’t plan on stopping here. In fact, our 2020 goal is to support 2,000 kids, which is equivalent to the number of refugee and migrant children who resettle in Victoria every single year.
Why is mentoring so important?
Studies have shown that disadvantaged kids who have a mentor are 130% more likely to hold a leadership position in a club, school council or sports team, and 81% more likely to participate in sports or extracurricular activities.
Not only this, but children who regularly meet with their mentors are 52% less likely than their peers to skip a day of school, 37% less likely to skip a class and 55% more likely to enrol in university.
So, what is it like to become a RMCC mentor?
Mentoring at RMCC is so much more than just helping out with homework and teaching new skills. It’s about bonding long-term friendships and providing a stable form of support that kids can wholeheartedly rely on — something that is really important in this time of uncertainty and change.
Here’s RMCC mentor, Seraphina, to tell you about her experience:
“It is amazing to see the progress of kids from when I started in February until now! I’ve assisted a number of children with their reading and writing and seen their confidence grow with each session, as well as their enthusiasm and willingness to engage with the different mentors and other children. It’s been a great experience”.
Ready to make a difference?
Check out Tony’s advice to anyone who wants to become part of the RMCC family:
“From personal experience, the best advice I can give to any future mentor is to come into the room with two things: a receptive heart and a set of ears. Why? Because mentoring is a ‘two-way street’ and it is those two things that make the children feel respected and appreciated”.
Click here to read more about why we do what we do, or check out our volunteer page to see how you can get involved.
You can also make a tax-deductible donation by clicking here.