January has long been recognized as National Mentor Month. Throughout the month, YMI will be sharing stories from mentors and mentees, highlighting the value of mentoring in our community. YMI is so grateful for all of our volunteers who dedicate themselves to making a positive impact in the lives of our youth.

One of our very first mentors is Mike Reed. Mike and his wife Jacquie, who is also a former YMI mentor, have lived in Fishers for 20 years. Mike retired from 15 years of full time ministry as the lead pastor at Fishers United Methodist back in July of 2011. He shares his story about the relationship he and his mentee have built over the years:

“For 3 years, I met with my mentee at Fishers High School. At first, I wondered if he would graduate, but as we kept meeting, I sensed that he was doing better. He worked hard during his senior year and graduated last May. We met yesterday for lunch and continue to keep in contact. It is gratifying to see him working and learning about life after high school. He still has plans to attend classes to become an EMT.”

Because Mike was willing to simply be present and available for this young man, he had the opportunity to make an impact in his life. Mentoring is about providing a listening ear and encouraging a student to recognize their potential. Sharing your life with a young person can give them that extra confidence they need to succeed both in school and in life. Mike is now mentoring a 6th grade student at Riverside Intermediate School.

Consider becoming a mentor for YMI in Fishers. More and more students are joining the voluntary school-based mentor programs. YMI currently has programs at Riverside Intermediate, Sandcreek Intermediate, Fishers Junior High, Fall Creek Junior High, Fishers High School and Hamilton Southeastern High School. Please visit our website, www.ymionline.org, and plan to attend our next Information meeting on January 20 or Feb 17.