I’m sitting here at work today thinking about my childhood. I’m thinking about the people who inspired me, the people I looked up to. Not just one specific person comes to mind. I was fortunate. I had many great teachers and coaches over the years that inspired me and pushed me to be great. I also was blessed to have both a mom and dad in the same home that were there for me. I didn’t really need an extra adult to be there for me.

But what if I didn’t have both parents, who would I be today? I can honestly say that I don’t know if I would have continued my education or been motivated to have a career. Maybe I would have been even more introverted than I am now and would have struggled to make friends.

Let me ask you: Do you remember someone that you considered an important person in your life as a child/teen? Someone that inspired or shaped you? Do you have that one person in your mind? OK great. Now think: What would your life look like now if that person hadn’t been a part of it?

So many children today could use a positive adult in their lives. Maybe they feel lost in school, struggling socially. Maybe they’re stuck inside — playing games or watching television every afternoon — and don’t have an adult to go on adventures with. About 1 in 3 young people are in need of a mentor. And youth who have a mentor are 52 percent less likely to skip a day of school.

You can help. Please consider being a mentor to the children of the Wenatchee Valley through the YMCA Ment2B Program. You already have the skills: The ability to be a friend by providing a listening ear.

Mentees spend 6-8 hours a month with their Mentors — participating in activities such as playing sports, going to the park, or other activities the Mentee may enjoy.

For more information about becoming a Mentor, or if you know someone that would be an excellent Mentor, or you want to refer a child for mentoring, contact me at the YMCA!

Samantha Krumdieck, (509) 662-2109, ment2b@wenymca.org