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Janet's ISM Experience

01-May-2015

The In School Mentoring program and my friend/mentee Sarah continue to bring me joy each and every week and I look forward to our regular time of sharing.

    After enjoying raising our three children and volunteering in many capacities in the education system, my husband and I became empty nesters as our youngest child left home to pursue post secondary education.  At this time I felt a void not only in my family life, but in my volunteer life and I sought out new volunteer experiences as a result.  I turned to Big Brothers and Big Sisters to help me fill this void and I was introduced to the In School Mentoring program and my special mentee Sarah!

    Having Sarah in my life has been one of the most rewarding experiences I have encountered.  When we first met, Sarah was very shy and quiet during our visits together and rarely made eye contact.  She reportedly enjoyed our time together and gradually engaged more in conversations, games, crafts and our special activities.  Today, Sarah always runs to greet me with a hug and a hello and as we catch up on the previous week's news she is excited to get involved in the "activity of the day".  Over the years we have enjoyed playing cards...Sarah usually wins...playing board games, doing crafts, playing on the outdoor equipment and decorating cupcakes or cookies for occasions such as Valentine's day, Easter and Christmas.

    The In School Mentoring program and my friend/mentee Sarah continue to bring me joy each and every week and I look forward to our regular time of sharing.

Janet Ballentyne

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