Tyler nonprofit says mentoring crucial to guiding lives of youths

“When I see what mentoring did to my life and the impact that he had on my life I feel obligated to give that back to any community I live in,” said Garrett.
Published: Jan. 6, 2023 at 10:15 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 6, 2023 at 10:34 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Every year in January, Mentoring Awareness is celebrated in East Texas and across the country to honor mentors who help guide youths.

“I grew up without my farther. He passed when I was a baby. So I remember going to my mom at the age of sixteen and asking her what do I need to do to be the man of this house,” said De’Onte Garrett, Director of Mentor Connect, a mentor program at Mentor Alliance.

He says he was inspired to Become a mentor to help break the cycles of fatherless homes.

“She said I love you Deonte, but I can’t teach you how to be a man you have to find that somewhere else,” said Garrett.

That’s when a man named John Moore came into his life as a mentor and has been his mentor for over a decade now.

“When I see what mentoring did to my life and the impact that he had on my life I feel obligated to give that back to any community I live in,” said Garrett.

According to Mentoring.org, young adults with a mentor are 55 percent less likely to skip school and it is shown to be linked to improved academic, social and economic prospects.

“The conversations he would have with his wife, how he disciplined his kids, how they dealt with disputes all of that stuff you don’t learn if you don’t have that in your house,” said Garrett.

“How to tie a tie how to change a tire, all of these things that were equipped with when we have multiple parents in the home or people that are intentionally building us. I missed out on all of the stuff that a Farther figure would have taught me,” said Garrett.

Leanbrea High is a counseling intern at Restore Family counseling. She is currently in grad school to become a licensed professional counselor.

“Having somebody to talk to pretty much about anything without being judged and someone who is kind of walking that same path you are going down its just amazing to have someone like that in your life,” said High.

“As I’m in my mentee Terrell’s life I get to show him a lot of the things that I missed out on if he didn’t have the opportunity to know if somebody doesn’t step up and be the man that he needs to have in his life,” said Garrett.

For anyone interested in becoming a mentor or anyone in need of mentoring, visit The Mentoring Alliance’s website for more information.