Derek and Buddy

Derek and Buddy

"Being a mentor has been an incredible journey for me so far! I have formed a close bond with my buddy and continue to look forward to seeing him every week. When first starting with AFK and meeting with my buddy, I was not entirely sure what to expect; but once we really got to know one another I found that he was actually the one teaching and helping me. My buddy has so far taught me to always go into things with a positive attitude and to always be ready for a challenge. During peak COVID 19 times, when we were not able to do socially distant meetings, we would FaceTime every week. I would always check in with him to see how he was doing and how he was feeling with all the craziness going on in the world. In turn he would check in with me and make sure that I was okay. He always reminded me that even though we could not hang out in person, at least we were able to see each other virtually. I have had a lot of great memories with my buddy and I look forward to making many more. Being a mentor is a fantastic opportunity and an even better experience. 

Athletes for Kids has proven to be an incredible experience for our son. During this usual time where his entire world has been flipped upside down, his mentor Derek, has been a constant in his life. Derek, as our son says, “is a nice and cool pal!” Our son really looks up to Derek and although at times reluctant to try things, Derek has such a way of making him feel at ease with the situation. Derek’s positive influence has led him to try new things, go with the flow, and be more flexible. Derek has created a space for our son to feel safe and confident. Derek really pays attention to his likes and dislikes. Their time together is so special. After hanging out, our son is beaming with excitement and enthusiasm. We are so grateful for Derek and AFK!"

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