LYF's Small Group Activities initiative has really taken off in 2016, encouraging mentors to spend time with their teens outside of LYF’s organised events, usually with one or two other mentor/mentee pairs. These outings give the mentors and teens a chance to have fun together, but more importantly, to chat about what is going on in the teen's lives, their goals and aspirations for the future. These small group activities have a profound impact on the success of LYF’s program, as the mentor has a much greater ability to positively influence and support their teen.
There have been some great examples of small group activities over the last few months and it has been great to see mentoring pairs becoming more and more effective. For example, mentor Erin Kelley arranged to collect her teen during the school holidays to go rock climbing. The pair had a great time racing each other up the walls, but also had the opportunity to have some great chats about their interests and goals. As a result of these discussions, Erin also organised to take her teen along to a Muay Thai private session. Mentor Erin commented “I think my bond with [my mentee] has vastly improved. She is very open and informative of her home life and frequently discusses her progress with her goals.” As well as giving her teen the opportunity to learn about healthy living and fitness, these activities have laid the foundation for a fantastic and productive year. Erin has a very unique opportunity to provide ongoing support and guidance, and to have a real and direct impact on this teen’s future.
Other examples have included attending a careers workshop, archery lessons and the Kickstart Youth Art Festival. The Western Force also kindly donated 20 tickets to a game after BDO1, and LYF coordinated a group of mentors and teens to attend NAB Stadium to cheer the Force on.
LYF has been absolutely delighted with the increasing number of small group activities and the impact this is having on the mentoring relationships, we hope this continues in 2016.