Have your teenagers conquered all their video games? Have they binge-watched all their favorite movies and TV series? ARE THEY TELLING YOU THEY ARE BORED? What if we could tap into their unique gifts and talents and help some other kids along the way? Imagine how it would make them feel to know they helped another person overcome some struggle in an area or school subject that they are natural experts at?
There are nearly half a million kids in Foster Care and according to NationalFosterYouthInstitute.org over 40% struggle with school subjects and job skills in computers and other areas! Less than 60% will finish high school and less than 3% will graduate from a 4-year college.
As a result of being removed from their homes and placed in different school systems, many have fallen behind or missed entire sections of their schooling. Getting special peer-to-peer coaching or mentoring can be a priceless aid to someone who is embarrassed or angry about their struggles in school or in the job market. By encouraging your teenager to use their talent to help one of these students, you will help your own teen increase their self-esteem and sense of purpose. Here are some programs to tap into and use as a template to start a local program in your area.
Foster Parent or Foster Care Organization?
If you are a foster parent or part of a foster care organization, you can help find teen or college student volunteers in your area within your own network or through local churches. There is also a great organization ready to help provide professional, certified tutors to help if needed. Reach out to CogniTutor.com they will work with you to customize a solution and pricing plan to fit any challenge you are facing. According to CogniTutor, their mission is: “to help students learn in a smarter way. This means students become educationally independent and don’t need a tutor’s help in the future! Instead of merely providing material to students, we help them learn to think critically, comprehend what they are reading, learn memory strategies, strengthen their test taking skills, and improve their weaknesses.”
How Do Children Wind Up In Foster Care?
Many kids in foster care are ripped from their homes due to neglect, abuse or abandonment. They age from just a few months old to their late teens. They are sent to different families, schools and even to other cities. Sometimes many times over due to issues beyond their control as well as internal/personality challenges while trying to cope with all the changes without knowing if it will ever end. They are facing these situations all alone, and in some cases they don’t even get to take their own clothes, toys or anything personal with them when they change homes!
You CAN help – Will You?
By taking some time to help others less fortunate right in your own community or online, you are not only setting a good example for your immediate family, you may help your own teen have a larger sense of purpose, and most of all you will help the helpless children who are victims of circumstances beyond their control. You will be doing to others what you would surely want someone to do for YOU! I am grateful that strangers reached out to help me and my siblings when we were in the system. They practiced the Golden Rule and we had a better life because of it. How about you? Are you a Golden Ruler? Reach out and help someone today.