The “Mentor Effect” in Massachusetts

During January in New England, when we hear terms like “ocean-effect,” we know we’re about to get a pretty good dose of extra snow.  But January is also a month when we hear about and celebrate the “Mentor Effect,” a term coined by the Massachusetts Mentoring Partnership (MMP) to celebrate the postive impact of mentoring all year long.

According to MMP, 64% of students with mentors develop a more positive attitude towards school.  United Way strategically funds one-to-one mentoring because of the research documenting that youth who are engaged in effective and long-term mentoring relationships have statistically significant improvements in school attendance, academic performance and attitudes toward learning.

Last year, United Way funding matched over 7,600 young people in our region with mentors.  We carefully selected 31 organizations whose programs meet the high standards of quality and effectiveness set out by United Way and Massachusetts Mentoring Partnership.  We also recently celebrated the work of the Lynn Mentoring Network, which gives more than 50 programs in Lynn the opportunity to learn from each other about what’s working and how to best serve the City’s youth.

You can make a difference too.  Join the effort of United Way and Matthew Slater of the New England Patriots and pledge to be a mentor; then, check out the resources at Mass Mentoring Partnership to get started.  Then we’ll all benefit from the positive “ripple effect” that volunteers and mentoring programs make possible for not only young people and their futures, but for the future prosperity of us all.