Alex’s involvement with Big Brothers Big Sisters as an in-school mentor stems from her desire to work with kids and be an external, neutral figure in their lives—a role distinct from that of a parent or teacher. She believes that the most important qualities a mentor can possess are empathy, kindness, caring, and being a good listener.

One of the most poignant moments in her mentoring experience came during the final two weeks of the program, when the girls expressed sadness about its conclusion. This reaction was a testament to the strong bonds formed over the seven-week program, highlighting the fleeting nature of time when meaningful connections are made.

Alex’s journey as a mentor has taught her that not all processes are straightforward. Planning is essential, but the ability to be creative and adapt to the moment is crucial for maintaining engagement. This lesson was underscored by her surprise at the emotional reactions of some girls during the program’s last week—those she initially thought were disengaged were among those who found it hardest to say goodbye.

For anyone considering becoming an in-school mentor, Alex’s advice is to embrace creativity. A standout memory for her was the last day’s conversations with the girls, marked by their sad faces and requests for her to return, showcasing the impact she had on their lives.

Alex learned to never judge a book by its cover, as demonstrated by the transformation of one girl who became highly engaged and saddened by the program’s end, contrary to her initial impressions.

The group enjoyed engaging in activities like Kahoot and various physical exercises, which not only made the sessions enjoyable but also fostered a sense of team spirit. This experience has also enriched Alex’s professional life, enhancing her creativity in her role as a supply daycare teacher.

To those interested in joining the Go Girls or Game On programs, Alex emphasizes the importance of patience. Understanding that it’s a learning curve for both the mentor and the mentees, and acknowledging the stress that comes with new experiences, is crucial. Her time with the program has not only allowed her to make a significant difference in the lives of young individuals but also to grow personally, learning the value of flexibility, understanding, and creative thinking in mentorship.