June 2018 SPECIAL EDITION September 2015 Issue - Page 2

September, 2015 Cornerstone Kids Mentoring Program There are over 1.5 million children in the United States who have a parent in a federal or state prison. Sadly, children of incarcerated parents will spend an average of 6-8 months separated from their parent(s), and are 6-10 times more likely to end up in prison than the average child. The average age of children with an incarcerated parent is 8 years old, and 22% of these children are under the age of 5. Catholic Charities have developed a program to help children who have an incarcerated parent. Cornerstone Kids is a mentoring program for children between the ages of 5 and 17 with at least one incarcerated parent. Mentors help young people develop their strengths and talents by supporting the efforts of other significant people such as parents, teachers, and social workers. barber/beauty salon, the zoo, to sports games, and movies. Every mentoring relationship is shaped by the different personalities, interests, and needs of each mentor and child. Mentors make a one-year commitment and the activities they choose - whether they just talk, play sports, or read together - reflect these unique qualities. But Cornerstone Mentors are asked to commit to spending at least four hours per month in one on one contact with their mentees. Mentors bring their mentees on safe, positive outings like the the real force for positive change comes from the fruits of the relationship itself: trust, confidence, enthusiasm, growth, and most importantly, FUN! Children are not the only ones whose lives can be changed by mentoring. For many mentors, the rewards of reaching out to another and building a close, trusting relationship are great, including an increase in personal enrichment, happiness, and self-knowledge. Mentors must be at least 18 years of age, must attend a two-hour safe environment training, and agree to an FBI background check. To become a mentor, or to enroll a child in Cornerstone Kids, simply contact Leo Jackson at 504-324-4432 or 504-307-9349. -2-