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Register now for Jan. 21 event at IUN

A mentor can help a young person improve his or her grades, build confidence and even stay off drugs. The role of these volunteers in young people’s lives is so powerful that President Obama has designated January as National Mentoring Month.

Find out more about creating and participating in mentoring opportunities at Northwest Indiana’s second annual Mentoring Summit, scheduled for 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 21, at the Library Conference Center at Indiana University Northwest. Registration is $25 per person, including lunch. The summit is intended for youth mentoring programs and adults interested in mentoring youth.

The Mentoring Summit, produced by the Center for Mentors co-op members, will focus on recruiting and developing quality mentors and youth mentoring programs among local businesses and organizations interested in improving their communities. The summit will feature a keynote presentation by Dr. Vernon G. Smith, Indiana state representative, professor at Indiana University Northwest, and founder and board president of the African-American Achievers Youth Corps, Inc., an organization founded to empower African American young males to take control of their lives in a positive manner.

“It only takes one person to make a difference in the life of a child. Most successful adults can point to at least one person—a parent, a teacher, a coach, a boss—who influenced their own lives,” said Harry J. Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer of Legacy Foundation. “Quality youth mentoring can improve a child’s educational experience as well as opportunities for the future. Lake County’s business and non-profit communities have robust resources to create and support a variety of mentoring programs.”

Breakout sessions during the summit will include:

  • Mentor recruitment and retention, facilitated by Cindy Borden, a trainer, facilitator and technical assistance provider with more than 15 years of experience in youth development.
  • Mentoring Toolkit for Communities: Developing your Business/Organization as a Champion for Youth Mentoring, facilitated by Chip Cotman, program coordinator for the Hours for Ours and Club Discovery programs in the Michigan City Area Schools. Hours for Ours is a school-based mentoring program that serves students in grades K-12, while Club Discovery is an after-school program for grades 6-8.
  • Attendees will also participate in a panel discussion, featuring NIPSCO personnel and a freelance consultant, about developing a corporate mentoring program.

The Center for Mentors is an initiative of Legacy Foundation facilitated in partnership with Geminus Prevention Services. In the year since its founding, the Center has trained more than 120 people to work with youth through virtual and place-based strategies to promote mentoring in Northwest Indiana.

For more information and registration for the Mentoring Summit, contact Eric Evans at Geminus Corporation at (219) 757-1883 or eric.evans@geminus.org.

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