January is National Mentoring Month, and our United Way Volunteer Center is sharing mentor stories all month long. This story originally appeared in the January 2015 edition of Charlottesville Family magazine.
For Tiaranesha “Tiara” Jackson, a fourth year University of Virginia pre-med student from Chicago, coming to City of Promise’s computer lab twice a week to tutor 5th – 12th grade students feels very familiar. “It really reminds me of home,” Jackson says. “The kids remind me of me at their age.” Jackson benefitted from a similar after school program, which she credits with helping her become a Gates Millenium, Scholar.
Jackson helps the kids review their homework, reads to other kids or plays board games with them. Because her background is similar to that of the students, Jackson knows what it takes to help them get on the path to college and a career. She is a positive role model, mentor and friend, and a consistent presence in the computer center. “Tiara proves that hard work pays off, “ says Latara Salisbury, who runs the City of Promise computer lab. “She embodies the character, work ethic and drive to succeed that we strive to instill in the City of Promise youth.”
Jackson, who is also a Big Brother, Big Sister mentor, says she simply enjoys being around the kids. “This happened for me when I was younger and it was a huge benefit. I want to do that for another child. These kids are a joy to be around – I love the personality of this place.”
Are you interested in becoming a mentor or tutor? We invite you to come to our annual Mentor and Tutor Volunteer Fair on Friday, January 30 from 11:00 – 2:00 at the Omni Hotel, downtown Charlottesville. Our friends at Raising Canes are providing their delicious chicken fingers for attendees.
To learn more about the local organizations attending the fair, who would love to help you become a mentor or tutor, visit CvilleVolunteer.org
We hope to see you on January 30!
Mentor. Tutor. Pass it on!
Posted by: Kim Connolly
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