| Jan 24, 2022
"My Mentor is the Brain of this Planet!"
Mentor Alexey and Vova
“My mentor is the brain of this planet,” said 19-year-old mentee Volodmyr (“Vova”) of his mentor Alexey. “I learned how to succeed. We spent a lot of time together. His support and information helped me build my career and believe in myself. I am glad that I have a mentor.”
Vova grew up without parents, in an orphanage. He was one of 50 young people, age 14-20, in the 2021 Pathways to Success program in Ukraine, funded and managed by Kidsave. These youth are students at the Centers for Social and Psychological Rehabilitation, graduates of boarding school, living with foster families or in orphanages or just in difficult life circumstances. The program trains and matches mentors with them to help them make their way, successfully, into adulthood.
When Vova entered the Pathyways program, he was quiet, shy and uncertain. But when Alexey became his mentor, they spent a lot of time together and Vova’s world changed dramatically. He attended trainings, events and an online camp, went on hikes, volunteered and met new people. He heard from many successful adults with gentle advice.
The program teaches “soft skills” like showing initiative, trusting others, talking about emotions and needs, how to communicate, self-esteem, developing interests, expressing oneself, leadership and learning.
With this guidance and attention, Vova began to take responsibility, show initiative, and help others. He found the strength to retake the college exams after not passing previously. He showed interest in changing and making plans for the future.
With the support of his mentor, he became a leader in the team, president of the alumni club and received a promotion at work. He began to focus on results and to take responsibility for his decisions and choices. He discovered that he has excellent organizational skills and can be proactive.
It was a two-way street. “We did it!,” said Alexey. “A small first step is a useful and very correct step. I learned a lot from Vova. I hope that our friendship will last a lifetime.”
Fast friends! Alexey and Vova