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Amazing Kids! of the Month

Amazing Kids! is proud to highlight the Amazing Kids! of the Month!

Each month, we showcase kids who are accomplishing amazing things.  We hope that by telling their special stories, we will inspire other kids to accomplish their own amazing achievements. 


Amazing Kids! of the Month for March, 2004: 
Amazing Young Mentors, Lauren and Cory Boldon;
Minneapolis, Minnesota

 




Quotes of the Month: 

"The [READY] program works, and we have improved it by adding a mentoring family-to-family component.  The old saying, 'It takes a village to raise a child' is exactly what our concept is about."

Cheryl Boldon,
Mentor, and the mother of amazing young mentors, Lauren and Cory Boldon
Minneapolis, Minnesota

"It's all about understanding differences in culture, education, and life experiences.  Through this process we have become more mature, as we see how this family lives and struggles.  We have become part of the solution to help this family move forward.  I believe that I have become a better person through volunteering.  I appreciate all I have and want to share it with others."

Lauren Boldon
Amazing Young Mentor
Minneapolis, Minnesota

"There's a special thrill you get from knowing that you've helped someone improve their life.  I believe this will help me when I grow up by being better able to care for my own children and my parents and grandparents, as they get older."

Cory Boldon, age 13
Amazing Young Mentor
Minneapolis, Minnesota


Amazing Kids! is pleased to announce our March Amazing Kids! of the Month, two amazing sister's from Minnesota, Lauren and Cory Boldon, who are mentoring and tutoring a needy family of brothers and sisters.

The girls, along with their mother, created a new "family-to-family" mentoring program as part of a local outreach program for needy families in the inner city of Minnesota.  Read their fascinating story below, and who knows?  You just may be inspired to recruit your own siblings and parents to start your own mentoring program in your own city!

Be sure to follow the mentoring links in the "Related Links" section at the end of the story to learn more about the growing mentoring movement in communities like yours across the United States.


Table of Contents 

The Boldons:  An Amazing Family of Volunteers and Mentors
Related Links



The Boldon's:  An Amazing Family of Volunteers and Mentors


Amazing Lauren and Cory Boldon:
 amazing karate kids as well as amazing mentors!

Here is Lauren and Cory's amazing story, as told by their mother, Cheryl Boldon:

"Originally my daughter, Lauren, who is fluent in Spanish wanted to tutor Hispanic (Latino) children in foster care, since the inner city of Minneapolis has one of the largest growing Hispanic populations in the country.  Lauren has an A+ average and Cory has a B average, so they would be competent tutors.
 
"I contacted Hennepin County about my daughters and I mentoring and tutoring a Hispanic sibling group in the social system.  Since no such program currently existed, I did not hear back from them.  Subsequently, I spoke with the head of the Ready Program for Youth, Dean Larson.  He said that he would need to get Hennepin County Board approval for my daughters to participate and for us to mentor and tutor a sibling group.  Currently, there were no programs for youth mentoring of any kind, nor for families mentoring other families. 
 
"Once board approval was received, a sibling group of 8 was selected.  We now work with 6 of the 8 siblings, ages 3-14.  We have been working with this family, since June 2002.  We see them on average 3 hours per week and more in the summer.  We go to the library to study, to movies, Valleyfair Amusement Park, the Zoo, the Science Museum, Imax theater, the State Fair, clothes shopping, shopping for Christmas presents and school supplies, and always to eat, because most often the children have not been fed when we pick them up in the afternoon.  We spend lots of time talking with them.  They are like an extension of our family.  We want them to succeed, and we love them.  We have told them that we will be there, until every last one of them has graduated high school.
 


Aspiring circus performers at the Science Museum
of Minnesota:
 two of the young mentees who are mentored by Lauren and Corey


"I believe we have changed their lives for the better. Here are a few statistics regarding the Ready Program for Youth.  97% of teen female participants (12-17) do not become pregnant.  99% are not incarcerated.  96% have not had delinquent behavior, while in the program.  99.7% of all participants have not attempted suicide.
 
"The program works, and we have improved it by adding a mentoring family to family component.  The old saying, 'It takes a village to raise a child' is exactly what our concept is about.
 


More fun at the
Science Museum of Minnesota!

"Lauren said, 'It's all about understanding differences in culture, education, and life experiences.  Through this process we have become more mature, as we see how this family lives and struggles.  We have become part of the solution to help this family move forward.  I believe that I have become a better person through volunteering.  I appreciate all I have and want to share it with others.' 

"Cory said, 'There's a special thrill you get from knowing that you've helped someone improve their life.  I believe this will help me when I grow up by being better able to care for my own children and my parents and grandparents, as they get older.'


 
"Our family volunteers in many ways.  We were a foster family for Cory, and then we adopted her.  We volunteer, as a family, feeding the homeless at The Family Place.  When Lauren was just three years old, she saw an ad to help feed the starving children.  She dialed the phone number right then and there and handed me the phone.  As a result, we now sponsor many children from other countries.  Lauren has raised money and volunteered at Mary's Place, a homeless shelter for women, and has raked leaves for the elderly.  Cory has volunteered delivering meals to the elderly.  Lauren and Cory are church bible camp counselors and sing at nursing homes, providing entertainment for the elderly.
 
"Lauren is a first degree black belt in karate and is currently screening for her second degree.  I am screening for my black belt, and Cory is a single black stripe brown belt.  She has another year to go, before she'll be screening for her black belt.  Lauren has been active in karate since she was 8, and she is now 13.  Cory has been in karate for 3 1/2 years, ever since she came to us in foster care.  Lauren is a published author of numerous religious poems.  She has been awarded the Presidential Award for Literary Excellence and Youth Poet of the Year Award."

Wow!  Way to go, Lauren and Cory!  You truly are amazing!

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Calling all amazing kids!  If you, or a young person you know, has an amazing project you are involved in, or a special skill, talent or ability you want to tell the world about, be sure to let Amazing Kids! know about it!  Simply complete a nomination form for an Amazing Kid! of the Month award, or email us!

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RELATED LINKS:

The Amazing Mentors! Program:  www.amazing-kids.org/mentors.html
The National Mentoring Partnership:  www.mentoring.org
The Harvard Mentoring Project:  www.hsph.harvard.edu/chc/mentoring.html


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A Special Message from Amazing Kids! for all you kids:

It's no secret...every person has an "amazing-ness" inside of them, just waiting to be discovered.  (Sometimes we just need a little help in finding out what that "amazing-ness" is!) 

If you are doing some amazing things too, we want to hear about it!  Send us your stories about your amazing accomplishments, so we can tell the world just how amazing you are!  We are always looking for new stories.  And don't be shy!  We'd love to hear from you!



Here's an idea you might want to try:

WHY NOT HELP OTHERS SEE THEIR OWN POTENTIAL?

If you know someone who needs a little encouragement, why not tell them what you think is special about them?  Maybe you can be the one to help them uncover their own special talents! 

Amazing Kids! is looking for teens to be Amazing Teen Volunteers and Ambassadors . If you'd like to join Amazing Kids! in helping to spread the word, please email us at:  info@amazing-kids.org .

HELP US SPREAD THE WORD:

  It's cool to be an Amazing Kid!

 

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