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Being a trusted adult for a young person can be life-changing, both for the young person and the trusted adult.
This is especially true for those at The Door, a local charity that trains and supports volunteers to become mentors for young people.
Mentor Jenny says “Being a mentor at The Door is the single most moving and rewarding thing I have ever done. It’s a privilege to be trusted to walk with a young person on their journey and I’d encourage anyone thinking of volunteering to dive right in!”
For many young people, the impact of the pandemic is far from over, in fact for those aged 14, time spent in lockdown makes up over 20% of their life. This has led to feelings of isolation, anxiety and uncertainty which means many teenagers are experiencing poor mental health. This is just one of the reasons young people come to The Door for support.
Volunteer team leader Elisha says “Our waiting list for mentoring is longer than ever. We are particularly looking for mentors in and around Cam, Dursley and Wotton-under-Edge to support young people local to them. Volunteers from across the Stroud District and South Cotswolds are also very welcome to apply.  The more mentors we have the sooner we can support the many young people locally that need that positive role model and non-judgemental space in their lives so they can realise their potential.”
One of our local young people shares their experience since starting mentoring at The Door:
‘I have been going to The Door for 3 years, going to youth club, its only in the past year and a bit Ive started to have mentoring. Mentoring saved me. If it wasnt for The Door, I dont know where I would be right now. I couldnt trust anybody for ages, I kept everything in until the youth worker and someone that works at The Door mentioned mentoring, I thought Id give it a go. I struggled at first to trust my mentor, but the weeks went by, and I trust her more. The support my mentor has given me has made such a difference and has boost my confidence. Mentoring has really helped me with expressing my feelings and getting everything off my chest. If it wasnt for my mentor, I would have quit and not gone to college this year for my dream job. But she has helped me all the way. If I could say anything to anyone who needs support, I would tell them mentoring is like having a friend who you can trust. They can give you advice and support. They arent judgmental, they listen, and they care.
Anyone can become a mentor.  You just need a heart for understanding and supporting young people and a little spare time (about an hour or so a week).  Full training is provided, Our 6 week training session (2 hours in the evening) starts on Monday 11th September at The Vibe, Dursley.   If youd like to join us and become a volunteer mentor, contact us on info@thedoor.org.uk or visit www.thedoor.org.uk/volunteer to find out more.