Natalie and Buddy

SHS Mentor Natalie and Ella

When my buddy and I first started spending time together, we played Monopoly every week. Now don’t get me wrong, Monopoly is a great game, but it is one we are all very familiar with. What I hope I have done for my buddy, and what I know she has done for me, is expand my mind beyond Monopoly. She has helped me re-spark my imagination and be creative-whether that is in an insightful conversation we are having or in making up a new dance. My buddy and I have invented a club, focused on behavior, so that we can be cognitive of our actions and aim to be better. She has the happiest laugh and never fails to make my heart swell when we are riding in the car and she is belting out the lyrics to any song on the radio. Being a mentor has made me appreciate joy and spending quality time with special people. I am a better person for knowing my buddy and am grateful for the time I get to spend with her.

Our family has been blessed to have Natalie as our daughter’s mentor for the past two
years. Natalie has been a very positive influence in our daughter’s life, being understanding and setting a great example of what being a good friend, a good student, and an ambitious strong girl looks like. They have enjoyed doing activities like choreographing a dance for a school talent show, visits to Last Chance Ranch, the Humane Society and competitive games of Monopoly.

Our daughter says this about Natalie. “You are the World to me, and I have so much fun with you and you are amazing. I will miss you so much!

We appreciate Natalie taking the time out of her busy schedule and having a genuine interest in her “buddy” and her well-being and future development. Our family will miss her as she heads to college and wish her the best.

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