Lots of very interesting things have happened since I last posted, but I'm going to let the big headlines pass for the moment (Don't worry I have thoughts on Sarah Palin queued up, by special request) and focus on mentoring, as I just got home from facilitating a segment of Girls Write Now Mentor Training.
Mentoring is one of those hot trends in programming for youth and adults and I have been involved in my lots of mentoring programming. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't, but when it does it can create lasting relationships that never would have existed otherwise. This week I talked with two women who were both involved in a mentoring program I ran a few years ago. A mentor in the program emailed to bounce some ideas around about a new mentoring program she is starting in DC through a professional organization; another was a mentee in the program looking for some advice about a fellowship she is applying for. Their calls reminded me why I loved that program so much and why I was so sad when it ended. The program had its flaws, but its greatest strength was the caliber of women who joined the program, who are still changing the world and who still rely on each other, now years after the program has ended.
At the end of the call with the mentee, she said, " I hope I am in the position to be helpful to you in the future." And I was so happy and teared up at the same time-- the young women I worked with there were so phenomenal, I can't wait until *I* am working for *them*.
It was a great moment to carry with me today as I went to the Girls Write Now Mentor Training to train on new and returning mentors. I shared my definition of mentoring and I'll post it here for comments: Mentoring is a purposeful intentional relationship that often starts out very artificially and when it works progresses towards being a meaningful relationship for both parties.
Girls Write Now does a fantastic job of nurturing new mentors and today's training was a perfect example of that. Each segment was designed with mentors' needs in mind, and the team that put the training together did a fantastic job. I left energized about the new program year-- the training was fantastic, the new group of mentors *gets* it, and I can't wait to see how their relationships develop.