The Air and Space Museum – check.
A Wizard’s game – check.
Laser Tag – check.
The list goes on and on for the countless adventures Adam and his mentee Cy’los have experienced together.
But it is the small moments that Adam values the most with his mentee.
“While we always have a great time hanging out during the activities, some of our greatest moments happen when we’re walking from place to place or driving in the car. When we get to talk.”
Adam first learned about Community of Hope through a co-worker who was Cy’los’ mentor at the time. When that match ended almost two years ago, Adam stepped in to become Cy’los’ new mentor, role model and confidant.
Twelve-year-old Cy’los and his family are part of Community of Hope’s Permanent Supportive Housing Program. As his mom benefits from our case management and employment services (check out her story here in The Washington Post Helping Hand), Cy’los is growing and learning in our mentoring program.
Described as bright, outgoing and someone who makes friends wherever he goes, Cy’los has never had a problem talking and bonding with Adam. They talk about their outings: what was fun about it, what did we learn?; they talk about school: how is it going, where can I improve?; and they talk about the future.
“Throughout our time [together], Cy’los has bounced between wanting to be a video game designer, a pilot, a professional athlete and many other things. I’ve helped him to understand that he can achieve any of these things and to never limit himself,” Adam explained.
Not only that, but “we’ve talked about looking into those goals. What does it take to be a professional athlete? What does he need to learn to make a video game?”
This type of self-exploration is the goal of our mentoring program. With two meaningful interactions a month, our mentors encourage their mentee to:
- Explore new experiences and interests.
- Create a vision for the future.
- Develop to his or her highest potential.
Cy’los’ mom has witnessed firsthand the positive effects of our mentoring program:
“They do community service. Adam helps him with his schoolwork and provides a strong influence,” she says. “Mentoring has really expanded his norms.”
For Cy’los, he says he’s learned a lot from Adam too, like how to be patient and calm in certain situations. His top goal for 2017? To make the school’s basketball team!
“It’s been amazing to see a young man grow in front of my eyes and knowing that my role in his life has helped him along his path,” Adam says, proudly.
This National Mentoring Month, we are celebrating our phenomenal mentors and mentees! Are you inspired by Adam and Cy’los’ story? Do you want to make a difference in the lives of youth coming out of homelessness? Learn how to become a Community of Hope mentor here.