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‘Match’ Your Family With a Child in Need

September 13, 2016

Ever wish you could be a foster parent or Big Brother/Big Sister to a local child, someone to be a stabilizing force, to increase the child's self-esteem and chances of graduating from high school? Your heart breaks for these kids, but maybe your brain balks because you're raising your own family and don't have the time or resources to make a commitment.

Enter the Youth Mentoring Network Family Match program. Operated through Youth Services System, the program coordinator works with a family to pair them with a mentee. Rather than bringing the child into their home to live or spending one-on-one time with them, the family match program "may mean setting an extra place at the table; or taking the child to the library, park or zoo with your own children," said coordinator Connie Ball. "The mentee benefits from the shared warmth, stability and caring in this family situation, and the family benefits by teaching their children something that they can only learn through firsthand experience: the satisfaction of helping others achieve meaningful goals."

For information, call Ball at 304-218-2857.

- Betsy Bethel



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