Mentoring in the Media

Check in here for the latest mentoring stories in the news!


Christine Saul - April 2019 Mentor of the Month

The Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program is delighted to name Arnold resident Christine Saul as its April 2019 Mentor of the Month. Christine has been matched with her twelve-year-old mentee, Aeryn, for almost a year and a half. “Christine is the perfect mentor for Aeryn,” said Kathryn Eustis, director of Student Support Services for the Calaveras County Office of Education. “She has a deep understanding of kids and showers Aeryn with love and attention.”

Tim Smith - March 2019 Mentor of the Month

Tim has considered mentoring since the Mentoring Program’s inception in 2003. He was matched with 10-year-old Gavin just over a year ago. “It just seemed like the right time and the right kid. I was waiting until my kids were a little older and I could give it the time it deserves,” said Tim. The Mentoring Program encourages prospective mentors to seriously consider the commitment required to become a mentor before signing up.

“He has someone he knows he can 100% rely on and trust and have as a confidant,” said Debbie. “Every time he comes back from hanging out with Mr. Tim, he’s positive and in a good mood. Mr. Tim is the perfect fit for my son because he allows Gavin the space to be who he is.”

Calaveras program celebrates National Mentoring Month 2019

Mentoring programs across the country are celebrating January 2019 as National Mentoring Month, a campaign designed to expand quality mentoring programs and connect more young people with caring adults.

Locally, the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program is celebrating its 16th year serving the youth of Calaveras. Established in January 2003 as a program of the Calaveras County Office of Education (CCOE), the Mentoring Program made its first match on Dec. 18, 2003, and its 160th match on Nov. 14, 2018.

“We are extremely proud of our youth and our youth mentoring programs,” said CCOE Superintendent Scott Nanik. “Building connections and getting youth excited about their future strengthens our whole community. We encourage more citizens to join this important work!”


CCOE helps make mentoring program holiday party 2018 a success

Employees of Calaveras County Office of Education and residents of Forest Meadows this year donated more than 50 toys for the kids in the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program.

The Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program hosts an annual Holiday Party for mentees, mentors and their families. At the party, each child gets to take home a gift. Most of the toys this year were collected at a toy-drive for staff at CCOE.

“The delight and excitement on the kids’ faces is something you can’t forget,” said Mentoring Program Coordinator Katie Lackler. “Our annual Holiday Party is a great opportunity for mentees to meet other kids their own age and for families and mentors to get to know each other in a festive, inclusive environment.”


Craig Burton named October 2018 Mentor of the Month


Calaveras County – October 1, 2018 – The Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program is honored to name Camp Connell resident Craig Burton as the October Mentor of the Month. “Craig is the kind of volunteer you can depend on, and an excellent mentor,” said Katie Lackler, coordinator of the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program. “It has been a joy to see his commitment and authentic approach to his friendship with his mentee, Ben.”

 Craig has been matched with 13-year-old Ben for over a year in the Mentoring Program. He came to an information session after speaking with another mentor, John Adams, who was matched with an 11-year-old boy in Murphys. “I was inspired by John. I didn’t know there was a program here, but after hearing about his experience I wanted to see how I could get involved.”

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Sarah Oskey Named June 2018 Mentor of the Month

Sarah and Sofia’s friendship has continued to grow despite several moves and changes in jobs and schools. Sofia says, “Every day Sarah came over would make my whole day.” Sofia likes being in the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program because she gets to meet new people.

 “She is such a fun person to be around. I love it when we get together and she’s bursting with stories. We laugh a lot!” said Sarah.

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THE PARTY All Aboard!

Unlock the Treasure Chest to Win a Hawaiian Cruise for Two! Friday, June 15, at Chatom Winery in Vallecito

If your idea of a good time includes great food, great music, great people and a chance to win a cruise for two to Hawaii, you’ll want to get tickets and keys for THE PARTY! THE PARTY takes place on Friday, June 15, 2018, from 6-10pm at Chatom Winery in Vallecito, and is the Calaveras Mentoring Foundation’s largest annual fundraiser for the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program.

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Kristin White Honored as April 2018 Mentor of the Month

 “What I like best about Kristin is her fun and creative personality,” said Charis. The duo has also spent time doing creative projects from soap-making to creating Valentine’s Day chocolates. When asked what she likes best about the mentoring program, Charis said, “It’s cool that I have an adult to rely on and who will always be there. It’s a very trusting friendship.”

Kristin enjoys the connection, too. “I started volunteering with the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program because it’s important to me to be involved in my community, and I’ve always enjoyed working with young people,” said Kristin. “Becoming a mentor has allowed me to connect with the community in a different way. Without the Mentoring Program, I probably never would have met Charis or her family, let alone have such a wonderful friendship!” 


Vicki Harrington - November 2017 Mentor of the Month

Vicki and Cris are a cross-gender match in the Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program.  Usually, boys are matched with men and girls with women, but mentoring program Best Practices have evolved to recommend that in some cases, it is appropriate for boys to be matched with women. “It is always a challenge to recruit enough male mentors for the boys on our waiting list,” said Katie Lackler. “In this case, though, Vicki and Cris came to our program to get support for their already-existing friendship.”

“One of the best times I’ve had with Cris was just recently,” said Vicki. “He showed me a comic book he’s making with all his own drawings. He’s very artistic. What I’ve enjoyed most about mentoring is being able to spend time with a young person and seeing my friendship with Cris grow.”

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Gary Olson - October 2017 Mentor of the Month

“Gary is a steadfast and passionate supporter of the Mentoring Program and has always been very modest about the value of his contributions. We are very lucky to have him in our program,” said Katie Lackler, Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program coordinator for the Calaveras County Office of Education.

Gary and Jacob love hiking, kayaking at New Melones, swimming in the Stanislaus River and playing basketball. “These two are very athletic and outgoing. They are also such jokesters with each other; they are hilarious!” said Jacob’s mom, Bernadette.


Lindsey Titus - July 2017 Mentor of the Month

The Calaveras Youth Mentoring Program is honoring Murphys resident Lindsey Titus as its July 2017 Mentor of the Month. Titus is not only a dedicated volunteer mentor, but also a valued member of the Calaveras County Office of Education Student Support Services team.

Lindsey has been matched with her 11-year-old mentee for a year and a half. “Sariah gets me out into the community and we meet people together,” said Lindsey. “We swing on swings and put our feet in the pond. Last winter we helped make Christmas wreaths to decorate downtown Angels Camp.”


Alan Horvath - June 2017 Mentor of the Month

Horvath’s match came about through a unique set of circumstances. He met Kevin, his 9-year-old mentee, through their church in Murphys.

When asked why he decided to become Kevin’s mentor, Alan responded, “It’s a God thing. When I heard April speak in church, something hit me on the head and said, ‘You can do that’.”

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Mentors extend helping hands to young adults - SWAG program provides support

“He was very impressed with me and the skills that I had behind the wheel,” said Ortega. “Tallakson is the type of person that is all about the kids, all about being on time and helping out young adults to try to make their lives better. That was what I was trying to look for in a mentor in the SWAG program.”