There was a student who dreamed of going to college. He lived in a city and went to a school where the realization of that dream was few and far between. During that time the young man had a mentor. Someone that guided, listened and advised him when he needed.
During his senior year, the young man was ready to begin the college process but was finding no assistance from his school in completing his applications. His parents could not help because they had never gone to college and the majority of his friends were not even thinking about it. Having nowhere to turn, he asked his mentor for advice. The mentor, hearing the obstacles that his mentee was facing, realized that more from him was needed than advice: he needed to get involved.
Over the next three weeks, the mentor assisted his mentee with every part of the college application process from finding the right school, applying for financial aid and writing his college essay. By the time the process was over the mentee was accepted to college, thanks in a major part to the help of his mentor. But, in truth, the mentor became more than a mentor. He became an advocate.
There are times as mentors when we have to do more than listen, encourage and advise. There are times when our mentee’s need us to stand for and with them. When we mentor our youth, we give them someone they can trust. But when we advocate for them, we give them someone that believes in them and fights for them.