I'm a Mentor.
Unlike most occupations, being a Mentor at Inclusion WA is hard to define. What does it entail? How can it be described? What does it take to become one?
Our Mentors come from all walks of life and are the faces behind the work we do. From facilitating opportunities out in the community and helping people who are marginalised to establish social connections, the role is ever-changing and can go from being open and fun to greatly challenging.
Mentors come from various backgrounds and often stumble across the opportunity while seeking change, or discovering a passion for this work after a spontaneous encounter with the role.
We’re introducing #MentorMondays - a series on Facebook aimed at celebrating our Mentors and shedding some light on what they do. It goes beyond just the role itself and gives you a glimpse into the lives of those behind it. Who exactly are our Mentors, where do they come from, what do they do and why do they do it?
They can be elusive sorts at times, but we managed to chat with a couple of Mentors, to give you a taste of what’s to come. Here’s what they had to say;
Why I’m a Mentor…
“I want to play my part to make sure people feel valued and don’t feel the exclusion I felt during my teenage years when I knew physically I was a bit different to my peers” – Danielle
“I do this work and will continue to because playing an important and positive role in someone’s life is very, very rewarding and a lot more fulfilling than any previous work I have done” – Jakeb
“For me the greatest highlight of my role as a Mentor is having the opportunity to share the joy someone experiences when they realise that they have replaced failure with success” – Londa
“No two days are the same so it’s impossible to get bored. Our interests and skills are matched to the people we work alongside so it’s easy to forget you’re even at work. It’s the most rewarding role I’ve had.”- Sarah
“The role is extremely dynamic with never-ending challenges. It allows for personal growth and improvement in various aspects for personal and career advancement” – Leila
How I came to being a Mentor…
“I am a hairdresser by trade. I’ve always loved working with people in different settings but in my previous roles I was left feeling under-utilised and unfulfilled” - Sarah
“After working in the youth sector for a few years, I decided to try something a bit different, so I applied to be a Mentor at Inclusion WA” – Rachel
“My background was 9 years in various retail roles but I always felt I had a calling to work within the community in a more meaningful role” – Danielle
“I had a great time studying in Perth and decided to be a nurse after high school and a gap year. After a few years in the profession I decided for a change of pace as shift work didn’t suit me. With an amazing opportunity I took to working at Inclusion WA full time after working casually for a few years since university days” – Francis Baptist
“I became a mentor by accident but am staying in this role by choice “– Leila
“It wasn’t really a conscious “I want to be a care-giver’ thing…” however I really fell on my feet with this role and now I couldn’t imagine doing anything else” – Londa
“After working in sales for over 40 years I was increasingly becoming more frustrated, bored and dissatisfied. I had studied over the years always with the intention of doing some sort of community service role but never really made the leap of faith. At 58 years old when I started with IWA everything has changed.” – Lorri
For more insight and to follow the #MentorMonday series, follow our Facebook page here
By Dimithira Jani
Q&A: Communication, Creativity & Mentoring
Claire is a Mentor, an art therapist, a dog-lover and recently won our AIMWA Scholarship.
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Opinion piece by Richard Orr - Mentor, Catalyst for Change and the Chief Operating Officer for Australian Inclusion Group.
Denver D'Cruz - 30th Anniversary Reflections
Denver is the General Manager for Inclusion Solutions.