Filipino guy in Los Angeles, talking about his daily blah, reality tv, world events... a little bit of everything

Monday, April 30, 2007

LEAF

This past weekend I finally had my mentor training. I mentioned a while back that one thing different I'm doing for my birthday was to volunteer again. I went online and found an interesting program looking for mentors for kids who are 18-21 years old. One thing special about these mentees...they're all HIV positive.

L
ast month I went through an extensive interview process, filled up a lot of forms and turned in some needed documents to proove that I don't have any criminal or bad driving records. After the interview, I found out that they wanted me to be one of the mentors for the first group of mentees. I was anxious about the training, mostly because I do'nt really know what to expect. Not only will there be other mentors but the mentees were going to be there also.

The training was in this beautiful old house in Pacific Palisades just north of Santa Monica. It was built in the 1890's and was owned by a prominent Los Angeles family but eventually turned into a retreat facility. One by one I met other mentors and eventually the mentees. As ignorant as it sounds I expected that the mentors to be older. Most of them were in fact around my age, all from very diverse backgrounds. Meeting the mentees was definitely one of the highlights of the weekend. Most of them were infected when they were babies. Its just so unfair.

Like any mentoring trainings, we covered a lot of topics; do's and don'ts, proper communication skills, expectations and limitations of the new relationship. Perhaps the symbolism used by one of the speakers about the mentor-mentee relationship best portrays what I've learned this past weekend. Mentoring is like planting a seed, you tend to it and watch over it. Hopefully it grows and blooms but even if it doesn't, you can only do so much.

I'm glad that I decided to be part of this program. Although I haven't actually started the actual mentoring, getting to meet these awsome people; the other mentors, the staff and most especially the mentees, really made me feel that theres a lot of good out there. People do care. I can't wait to continue in this journey.
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1 Comments:

Anonymous jase said...

I wish you all the luck my dear! It is so good that you involve yourself in this kind of actitivies - giving yourself to others especially those in need!

Cheers.

11:16 PM

 

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