MRISJ Impactful YMCA Mentorship Program

For over 10 years,  Bridgewater State University has had a partnership with the Old Colony YMCA called While on the Waitlist (WOW) for students to help mentor young children as they wait to be paired up for long-term mentorship.

This program allows students working with the Martin Richard Institute for Social Justice (MRISJ) to participate in the WOW program. This happens quarterly, allowing students to plan programs like minute to win it or bingo for the children.

Amanda Trask (she/her) Executive Director of Community Partnerships at the Old Colony YMCA explained that the program itself is planned by the students “So the social justice fellows serving at MRISJ usually plan the activities…which again is awesome…they plan a range of activities that are appropriate for a lot of ages because…at the event, we typically have like 9 to 14-year-olds attending.”

Trask further expressed that by the students planning and running these events, the staff is allowed to work on their long-term mentorship programs from observing children in these activities, “which has been so helpful because a lot of times we see the youths either in an interview, which can be intimidating, or on paper, and that’s really all we get to help us with matching.”

Laura Mulvey (she/her), Community Programs Manager with MRISJ, explained that students holding the position of Social Justice Fellow plan these events that, hoping to benefit the students and the volunteers who attend the programs receive; “All of those trips are organized and facilitated by a justice fellow. So the student leader runs those trips. And…that’s something else that they’re really getting out of this experience. The Bridgewater students are having the chance to plan and design an activity and an event with their fellow students.” Mulvey stated, “students get a lot out of this program. Some of it is practicing the skills that they might be using as future educators! They’re learning to run programs or work with youth. And then some of the pieces are really getting to know the community and getting to know directly, you know, services that the Y provides, connecting with youth.”

Trask wished to express thanks for the long-standing partnership.

“We just really appreciate having BSU and having the planned activities is just really helpful for us as we do so many other…activities at the Y. It’s so nice to have that be something that we know the college students will be interested in, because it’s planned by their peers. So we really appreciate that!”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related

Come One, Come All: PC’s Annual Carnival

Program Council’s (PC) free Annual Carnival took place on Sunday, April 14th in the Moakley Lot, providing plenty of space for each attraction. This year’s carnival was larger than last year. “The carnival kept falling on rainy days [last year], so we couldn’t do as much,” said Phoebe Wilmot (she/her), Spirit and Traditions Director of […]

The Bridge Unveils 21st Edition at BSU Arts Fest

The 21st edition of The Bridge, Bridgewater State University’s annual literature and arts journal, was unveiled to much anticipation on April 24 at University Park as part of the BSU Arts Fest. The staff of the journal introduced the first, second, and third place prizes for both art and literature, and the winners spoke about […]

AKA’s Upsilon Iota Chapter Fosters Community Leaders

On December 8, 2018, at 6:08 p.m., the Upsilon Iota chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Inc. (AKA) was chartered on the BSU campus as its first Black Greek organization.  Since then, it has been a space to empower Black female students at BSU and become stand-out members of their communities. The Comment interviewed line sisters […]

BSU Confronts Fast Fashion With Art Installation

Walking into the Rondileau Student Union (RSU), you might do a double take. But no, that’s not a pile of dirty laundry (cue residents everywhere running to check their washers). The Aftermath (2021) is a multimedia sculpture that is on loan to BSU until May 17. The huge pile of clothing highlights the impact of […]