The Pasadena-Altadena Chapter of the Links, Incorporated established the “Links-Up for Success: Connecting Through Mentoring” program in 2009 and it is now enjoying its’ twelfth year of serving the young women of middle and high school age at Pasadena schools, principally through John Muir High School. The program provides one-on-one mentoring and group workshops for the students (mentees) with an emphasis on personal growth, education and self-esteem.
Recently on Saturday, November 12, 2020, our Health and Human Services Facet presented a forum about a most important subject today. The forum, “My Mind Matters” was held virtually in our Links of Pasadena Zoom Room. The key speaker, Cpl. Domino Scott-Jackson of Pasadena Police Department, presented a workshop on protecting young people’s mental health, during this period in time.
COVID-19 related shutdown of activities has caused young people to have to deal with sadness, depression, listlessness, and loneliness, all as they deal with COVID-19 responses along with all the rest of entry to adulthood. “Its OK to not be OK, says Cpl. Scott-Jackson. “Start building your safety net of resources to use and share with friends.” In the Q & A breakout sessions, the message continued that we need to understand that our “normal way of being” may be changing, and that’s all right. “You may notice friends going through things too. This is a difficult time, and its going to get better.”
The Saturday online forum was held for young people aged 12 and up, their parents and caregivers in attendance.
Among our benefactors is the Yes, Virginia Fund. Since 2018, the Fund has granted our Chapter with funds to further our work with local high school-aged youth. Holidays are a time for giving and sharing, that giving to those in need is in so much of what we teach our girls.
2020 has challenged us to share something meaningful and refreshing to the mentored class, and this year, that is favored by a grant from the Yes , Virginia Fund. As our partner, Yes, Virginia Fund has made possible a virtual cooking class for twelve mentees, facilitated with a local Culinary Instructor, Chef Roslyn Spence.
In past efforts, the 2019 season for example, gifts to the Links Up! for Success mentees came through a grant . The mentees were taken on a well-earned trip to the LA Children’s Choir Christmas Performance At the Walt Disney Hall, followed by a dinner and gifts. Thank you, Yes, Virginia Fund!
The objective of the program is to provide these young women with connections to resources that will make their high school years meaningful, while inspiring critical thinking, promoting problem solving skills, fostering academic achievement, promoting a commitment to higher education and establishing the foundation to success in career choices, family life and future endeavors.
The program recruits students beginning in their 8th grade year of middle school through high school. All the focus is to follow the students through graduation and beyond. The program is mentee centered; and all activities are directed to serve the needs of the young women.