Mentoring is a development strategy for a child’s successful path to adulthood
A supportive individual, i.e. a mentor, works closely with a child to build a relationship by offering guidance, support, and encouragement to cultivate the child’s positive and healthy development and thus helping them grow up by becoming confident, respected and responsible.
Mentoring creates assurance in a child’s mind that there is someone who cares about them, and that they are not alone in dealing with the day-to-day challenges.
Who can be a Mentor?
Ideally, local volunteers who are expert / trained to be mentors and can be role models to the kids. A strong desire to help change lives of under-privileged kids is essential
Role of Mentors in the Happy Kids Program
- To build mutual trust.
- To become a reliable friend who is always there for the child in difficult situations.
- Regular contact and conversation.
- Meeting with the child – once in a month and as mutually agreed between the mentor and mentee.
- Regularly calls to kids – once in a week or at least fortnight.
- Talk to the child’s parent/guardian along with Ra team member – if and as required.
- With the child’s agreement and Ra Foundation’s permission, visit to school/college to build a good relationship with their classmates and to understand the kid’s progress.
- Coordinate regarding the child’s progress with Ra Foundation on regular basis.
- Coordinate with other experts if required.
Skills of Mentors
- Efficient relationship building and management based on mutual respect.
- Encouraging the child’s qualities and nurturing them.
- Respond to the child’s needs.
- Provide inspiration and challenges to improve the child’s abilities.
- Nurture a warm relationship and be empathetic to the child’s difficulties.
Areas of Support
- Mentors help improve a child’s self-esteem, academic performance, behavior, and help cultivate a positive attitude towards life.
- Mentors help the children develop strong interpersonal relationships with others and strengthen their communication skills.
- Mentors may help with studies thus improving their mentees’ academic skills.
- Mentors help college youth set career goals and start taking steps to fulfill them, keeping Ra Foundation in the loop.
- Mentors can use their personal contacts to help their mentee meet industry professionals, finding internship, job possibilities, hostel, PG accommodation, etc.
- Mentors help the child learn new skills, discover hobby classes and coach.
- Mentors can help their mentees learn how to seek and keep jobs.
- Mentors help the child deal with a problem, if any arises, at school, home or in personal life.
I lead the social work department at Akanksha Foundation and I have worked with children, parents, communities, and schools for the last 20 years. I remember the incident when two children from Akanksha center lost their mother, their father was imprisoned, and the kids were abandoned, In this situation, Ra foundation became their foster parents. The journey from Akanksha to Ra Foundation began and now more than 40 children are in the Happy Kids Program. I would like to thank the team who are committed workers and are passionate about each child's holistic development. We have been associated with Ra and their team for the last 10 years. The team is wonderful and they take good care of the kids.
Rakesh Ghone, Social worker, Akanksha Foundation
Witnessing RA's journey from 2 to 49 kids gives a feeling of being lucky to be part of so many families. It has been amazing the way children, families, and supporters have trusted RA and helped it grow. We are successfully evolving, passing through phases, and it brings us joy to hold hands, multiply our togetherness and keep moving forward. I feel we have managed to create a safe and enriching space for vulnerable children with the help of partnerships and a fun and flexible space for the RA team members. We look forward to each one's continued support to RA or in any other way to make this a better world for us and the generations to come.
Sonali Jain, Ra Foundation
Since its inception, Ra Foundation has been doing pioneering work in health and education enabling many children from vulnerable backgrounds to lead happy and fulfilled lives. Teach For India has a longstanding association with Ra Foundation as partners, and we couldn't be more proud of this collaboration. Thank you for all that you've done and all that you continue to do. I eagerly look forward to seeing and supporting your continued impact. Here’s to us learning, growing and working together for many more years to come.
Shaheen Mistri, Founder TFI
Ra Foundation is the best NGO working for the betterment and bright future of the kids who are out of the stream of education due to lack of financial support. The team of Ra foundation is working in a dedicated manner on this project. We are partnered with the NGO since 8 years. Their valuable contribution has enabled children to reach their highest potential. I salute Ra Foundation's team and their devotion and service for the betterment of society.
Ajay Sonavane, Principal- Sweet Memories High School , Panchgani
Education for every child can turn walls into doors. The Happy Kids Program has mirrored this belief and reached out to the most vulnerable children who often fall through the cracks and never make it to the mainstream, ensuring they have a safe and empowering environment to learn, grow and thrive. We are proud to call Ra Foundation one of our earliest partners, together with unlocking the potential of many children.
Anurag Mishra, CEO, Cipla Foundation
Ra Foundation works to provide opportunities for learning and personal growth to children who come from backgrounds where they might never have been given these chances. I have seen how the lives of these children completely changed because of the intervention and support of the Foundation. These are children who may have otherwise fallen through the cracks but who now, thanks to Ra Foundation, have a chance at a better life and a more meaningful contribution to society at large. When I see these successes, I feel extremely privileged to be associated with Ra Foundation.
Manesh Patel, Partner Ernst & Young
Ra Foundation has always prioritized support for the most vulnerable children and they’ve gone about their mission in an incredibly thoughtful and caring ways. Through Akanksha’s partnership with Ra, we’ve witnessed incredible stories of the transformation of our children, something we never imagined would be possible.
Saurabh Taneja, CEO Akanksha Foundation
The best way to make children good is to make them happy. (Oscar Wilde) The Ra Happy kids program is doing all the right things to help children be happy. Which in turn will make them responsible and well-adjusted adults. I am fortunate to be associated with this program and look forward to interacting, guiding, and motivating the Ra children. - Tanu Balaporia
Tanu Balaporia (Mentor- Ra Foundation)
Kids are the future of the world and hence its also true that happy kids means a happy future. Ra’s Happy Kids Program is a noble step in this direction. It is my honour to be deeply attached to this program and share so much with the kids. It is initiatives like this that make you believe that what we sow today will bear fruits for the generations to come! -Shikha www.purnayog.com
Shikha Pandey (Entrepreneur, Yogini, Podcaster, Mentor- Ra Foundation)
Role of Ra Foundation
The Ra Foundation Team will help and support the mentors whenever it’s needed. We will maintain regular communication through meetings and calls as well as keep records of children provided by mentors.However, any major decision concerning the child will be taken by Ra Foundation