Julie J julielj at windstream.net
Fri Dec 4 12:37:18 UTC 2009

Thanks!  I hope to.


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Susan Jones" <sblanjones11 at sbcglobal.net>
To: "'NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users'" 
<nagdu at nfbnet.org>
Sent: Thursday, December 03, 2009 5:47 PM

> Julie, WAY TO GO!
> Keep up the good work.
> Susan & Rhoda
> -----Original Message-----
> From: nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf
> Of Julie J
> Sent: Monday, November 30, 2009 4:39 PM
> To: NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users
> Subject: [nagdu] news article
> Here's the  text of that article I mentioned earlier.
> ***
> TeamMates mentors help kids
>      News-Times/Kate Burke - Tanner Staehr (left) benefits from Tony 
> Howe's
> mentoring in the York Middle School TeamMates program.
>      see all of our photo galleries
> By Kate Burke
> Published: Sunday, November 29, 2009 11:11 PM CST YORK - Tony Howe would
> like, for once, to be proactive.
> For 13 years, Tony has been a police officer, the last six in Lincoln. "A
> lot of the kids I see in my work, it's just not good," he says. "I thought
> I'd try this."
> Tony, a York High School graduate and resident of York, became a mentor in
> the TeamMates mentoring program. He meets with seventh grader Tanner 
> Staehr
> an hour a week at York Middle School.
> "I just want to help Tanner, just be that extra person for him to come and
> talk to," Tony says. "Not that I have all the answers, but sometimes it's
> important to hear it from somebody who's not mom or dad or the teacher."
> Tanner is intelligent and energetic. He urges Tony out to the foosball 
> table
> in the school atrium. Rods spin, the ball flies, and within seconds, 
> Tanner
> scores.
> Now the game is on.
> "He's a really good guy," YMS counselor Dave Ciccone says of Tony. "He's 
> the
> perfect mentor because he cares about kids. That's the main requirement."
> Julie Johnson had a similar reason for becoming a TeamMates mentor. As the
> Juvenile Diversion Coordinator for York County, Julie too often sees kids
> after they've had that "oops moment."
> She works with non-violent offenders, mostly with minor-in-possession,
> criminal mischief, vandalism or shoplifting charges, trying to prevent 
> them
> from messing up again.
> With YMS seventh grader Paige Homan, she has a chance to prevent that
> initial "oops moment" ever happening.
> "I want to be a positive influence on her life," Julie says.
> A TeamMates mentor commits to an hour a week for one school year. Students
> are recommended to Dave by teachers, and he matches them up with a mentor.
> "I figured it was gonna be some homework thing," Paige says.
> She found out differently when she met Julie and her guide dog, Monty.
> "When [Dave Ciccone] said there would be a friend along, I thought, Huh,"
> Paige remembers. "When I saw the dog, I was really shocked."
> Homework may be part of the mentoring, if that is what the students want.
> Otherwise, the TeamMates mentors are there just to be a steady support, 
> and
> a friend. They are fairly free to decide how they will spend their time
> together.
> Paige and Julie laugh about a recent attempt to fly a kite in 30 mph 
> winds.
> Sometimes they play card games, and most often, they just talk.
> "It's very much Paige-directed," Julie says with a smile.
> Both Julie and Tony are new mentors this year. For both, it was just time 
> to
> step into a kid's life to work some good, instead of trying to undo 
> trouble.
> Tony has three young children of his own, and he had them in mind, too, 
> when
> he signed up for TeamMates.
> "I just wanted to show my kids that it's important to volunteer, to give
> back."
> For more information on the TeamMates mentoring program, or to volunteer,
> contact Dave Ciccone at York Middle School, 402-362-6655, option 1, or 
> visit
> the TeamMates Web site at www.teammates.org.
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