Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tuesday with Mentor and Mentee - Griselda & Nayeli

"I would like to thank my mentor for being there when I needed her. She would always call me and take me to fun places. She showed me she cared about me when she would ask me how I was doing and wanted to always help. She also helped me with college and told me which colleges were famous and talked to me about life".


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Hawaiian Gardens 5/14/2011

Mentors and Mentees enjoyed getting to know eachother as they competed against each other at the human knot and they raised to an open spot at "never have I ever"

Tuesday with Mentor and Mentee - Rebecca & Patty

"I want to thank you for all the good you have done and all the caring that you gave me. I care a lot for you and I love that you are so funny, friendly and cool. You are the best mentor that I have ever had".

Hope to see you next year!


Friday, May 13, 2011

CHLA Junior I - Mentee Summit

Mentors take a sit back and practice their active listening skills as mentees engage in a dialouge/discussion with one another. Our youth today are often silence by adults and what the mentee summmit does is allow a space for the youth to speak about what's on their minds without any adults input or interruption. It is always amazing to hear how much our youth have to say.

Agueda's Thoughts: We Wait.

As I listened to Obama’s speech on Tuesday about Immigration Reform I couldn’t wait to blog about it today. I took notes and paid close attention to all that he said but regardless of this, today I am finding it quite difficult to write about an issue that is so personal to me.

It was difficult and frustrating to listen to Obama talk about all the things that need/should happen within our immigration system because it is the same conversation that has been happening for years now. Everybody knows the system needs reforming. Those of us who are personally effected by the issue have been anxiously awaiting the change that was said to be near. Yet, this year there have been more deportations and family separations than any year in our recent history. The number of border agents has more than doubled since 2004; the wall the republicans wanted built along the border is now up; and less people are attempting to cross the border now. What else needs to happen? What barriers still need to be added? How much more hatred needs to be spread in order for those in power to understand that in essence, the changes they have made have only been put in place to keep the opposing political party happy.

No real change or comprehensive reform has happened. Yet, we wait. We wait because that is all we CAN do. We wait to see how many more families will be separated, how many more people will lose their jobs, their homes and their freedom. We wait. We wait while our families struggle to make ends meet, while our lives are on hold, and while more laws are passed that only perpetuate hatred and ignorance. Unfortunately, this waiting game along with everything else has lead to an increased feeling of disillusionment among many, like me.

Regardless of my frustration, disillusionment, and overall anger towards the status of our broken system I will continue to wait for something to change because I NEED something to change. I NEED it to change for me, my family and an entire portion of our population.


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Tuesday with Mentor and Mentee - Michael & Robin

"I would like to thank my mentor for talking to me about college and helping me with problems. I know my mentor cared because he always asked about my parents. He always told me to take care of myself. In Rhino I learned to trust people and keep control of my life".


CHLA Senior I Reach for Your Dreams

Mentors and Mentees went through a community building activity and helped each other "reach for their dreams".

Monday, May 9, 2011

Cheaper than therapy

Long before hip hop and rap slams originated in Chicago in the 70s and Eminem famously disgorged the contents of his stomach on screen (woops there goes gravity) people were using spoken word and poetry to give voice to the things that moved their souls and angered their social consciousness

In fact, the Japanese have the form beat by some 500 years with Haiku slams.  Haiku is an efficient form of poetry having three lines of five, seven and five syllables, originally invoking nature.  But modern folks have expanded the form to include all kinds of expression usually related to the nature of our experiences in this world.  There is even Gangsta Haiku and Funny Haiku

So, we decided to write impromptu Haiku at our mentoring session Friday at Shout Factory and see what kind of expression would emerge.  Our mentors and young people never cease to impress and amaze with the soulful wisdom that they express in the moment. We turned it into a slam, with judging based on content and delivery.  It escalated into a two team Haiku smack down with people standing in groups and calling out the other side.  Here are the two winning poems along with a mentor's expression that I feel relates to the therapeutic process of mentoring in general:

The world turns around me
My breath is taken away
I am now awake
Mario (mentee)

My life is a stage
I guess I have to dance it
Dancer hits the beat
Tony (mentee)

Writing this haiku
All the years of therapy
This was much cheaper
Dana (mentor)

with much appreciation,
Tony LoRe
CEO/Founder, Youth Mentoring Connection

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Hawaiian Gardens 4/30/2011

Hawaiian Gardens back to back session at the park.

Tuesday with Mentor and Mentee - Chuey & Lamar

"Thank you for looking out for me, checking up with school work, and concerned about by medical issues. Thanks for all the help and support!!! Love ya! You told me to go to the doctor and check up on my knee. That let me know you were concerned about my medical problems. I learned to keep my head up through tough times and stay positive."


Monday, May 2, 2011

The chain reaction of evil must be broken

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction. The chain reaction of evil must be broken or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

peace and blessings,

Tony LoRe
Youth Mentoring Connection / Urban Oasis