Fridays with Franky: Mentors Matter
Happy New Year from Franky the WeHaKee Camp Dog! I’m feeling motivated going into 2018, spurred on by our 95th Anniversary Summer and all the campers and alumnae who will grace us with their presence in the warmer months.
At our Council Fire this summer, we will sing “Standing on the Shoulders” to remember and honor all the amazing people WeHaKee women who make our current camp experience possible. With our long 95-year history, some of these people can feel like they are from the very distant past. It seems easy to honor them as the ideal WeHaKee women because they have become history. However, we also need to acknowledge the people in our lives right now who we depend upon for guidance and look up to!
The American Camp Association’s Camping Magazine reminded me that January is National Mentoring Month! Camp provides a unique opportunity for mentor and mentee relationships to develop. WeHaKee’s Leadership Academy is a great example of this. High-school aged campers are lead by the camp directors and other experienced senior staff in analyzing and practicing good leadership skills. This allows those campers to help their peers in turn. They can take these practices out into the world with them, allowing them to help others, but also to recognize those leaders in their own lives and careers that will help them the most.
“Mentoring, at its core, guarantees young people that there is someone who cares about them, assures them they are not alone in dealing with day-to-day challenges, and makes them feel like they matter” (Mentor: The National Mentoring Partnership, 2017)
“At the Heart of WeHaKee is Relationship”
WeHaKee campers experience the way leadership and friendship have a positive impact on all aspects of life. They are challenged to make the “real world” more like camp. It is our hope at WeHaKee that our campers will grow up wanting to pass that experience of support and love onto someone else. We want camp to be the mentor that shows our campers how much they are cared for and supported!
So this month, I challenge you to write a letter or note to someone from camp who demonstrated to you that you were not alone, and that you mattered. Remind them that they are a mentor to you. And remember that your example may do the same to someone else.
See you at camp!