Taylor Hall gives back through mentorship
Charity and stewardship are very important tenets instilled in residents of Taylor Hall, located at The University of the West Indies, Mona. One of the results of this is the Taylor Hall Mentorship Programme, which was established in 1997 and has been assisting students from communities around the university campus.
“The programme was formed out of the need to give back and the realisation of the necessity to give help to the overwhelmed grade-six classrooms,” said Devaraine Rowe, Taylor Hall chairman.
The programme provides free assistance in subject areas to students who will be sitting the Profile Exit Profile examinations. This comes in the form of one-on-one tutoring for each child in the areas that they find challenging. Each child is therefore paired with his or her personal mentor at the beginning of the programme.
“The participants also benefit from activities geared towards positive personal development, such as art and craft, etiquette training, sports, among other activities. At the end of the programme, a progress report is sent to the schools on what the programme, achieved in the year,” Rowe continued.
The students are selected by reaching out to surrounding schools in vulnerable areas and requesting from their administration a number of students to participate in the programme. Nevertheless, the programme has accepted students who have heard about it through word of mouth or those who have parents working on the university’s grounds. A relationship is formed with not only the schools, but also the parents of the children to ensure maximum effectiveness.
The Taylor Hall Mentorship Programme takes place each Saturday at the hall between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. It is yearly spearheaded by the Taylor Hall Committee, specifically the external affairs chairperson, which is coordinated by Kimone Logan and deputy, Davion Sterling.
“It is heart-warming to see how students develop across the various weeks of the programme and not only improve academically, but holistically through their effective one-on-one sessions with their mentors,” said Logan.
The mentorship programme is made possible by residents living in the hall who work assiduously and passionately each Saturday, as mentors, to produce the best results from the students. The dedicated volunteers range from first-year to third-year students, who leave a lasting impact on the students.
“For the academic year 2019-2020, a total of 20 official mentors and five part-timers help to impart the weekly curriculum and activities on the benefiting 30 students,” Logan explained, “Currently, there is a total of 30 students from four different primary schools who are officially registered; however, the number fluctuates weekly based on the fact that the programme accommodates walk-ins,” she finished.