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Mentoring at Hope Center is a Great Feeling for UVA Student

January is National Mentoring Month.

All month long we are featuring guest posts from many of our local nonprofits that work with youth and need volunteers to become mentors and tutors. On January 26, 2012, the United Way Volunteer Center invites you to our annual Mentor and Tutor Opportunity Fair from 11:00 - 2:00 at the Omni Hotel. There you will be able to meet in person with representatives from 17 local organizations and fit the right fit for you as a mentor or tutor.

Mentor. Tutor. Pass it on!

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I can honestly say that helping out at the Hope Center in Charlottesville is one of the things I look the most forward to about the weekend. Every Friday afternoon, a group of my friends head to the Hope Center to join Ms. Lori-Ann in mentoring and teaching the kids, many of whom go to Venable Elementary School.

I have only been to the Hope Center a half-dozen times, yet each of these times has been even more rewarding than the previous. The kids are all really great, and you can tell immediately that they really enjoy and benefit from having someone older to spend time with. Some of these kids have absent parents, and others just really enjoy having an adoptive older sibling to look up to. Either way the kids remember who you are, and seeing the recognition and excitement in their faces when you come back to see them again is a great feeling that is hard to explain.

Being a mentor to these kids is one of the most humbling and valuable experiences that I have had at UVa. Ms. Lori-Ann is a incredible woman that commands respect from the kids but is also adored by all of them. You wouldl love meeting and getting to know her and the kids.

 

Guest Post by Matt Sutton, University of Virginia student and Hope Center volunteer.

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