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Humanist Mentoring Network Launched

by Andrea Szalanski
SHB Managing Editor


The following article is from the Secular Humanist Bulletin, Volume 15, Number 2.


Two years of planning and preparation have resulted in the launch of the Mentor Connection by the Freethought Society of Greater Philadelphia. Director Margaret Downey created the program with support from the Council for Secular Humanism.

The purpose of the Mentor Connection is to connect persons who are new to activism with longtime experienced activists, according to Downey. Potential mentors and protégés must submit applications with references. "Not all applicants will qualify as mentors," notes Downey. "A screening process will apply that includes the ability to inspire, relate to, and teach protégés. Willingness to commit time and energy required for mentoring will also be taken into account. We are looking for a diversity of personality and backgrounds among mentors. Matching personality types is a priority."

Protégé applicants will probably be immediately assigned a mentor and invited to attend an organizational meeting. 

CSH has provided financial and promotional assistance to the Mentor Connection. Last year Downey led a leadership development conference at the Center for Inquiry International in Amherst, New York, to help identify possible mentors. She used the book Managers as Mentors by Chip Bell to help prepare. She recommends the book to anyone considering being a mentor.

To find out more about the Mentor Connection, contact Margaret Downey at the Freethought Society of Greater Philadelphia, P.O. Box 242, Pocopson, PA 19366; telephone, 610-793-2737; fax, 610-793-2569; e-mail, downey1@cris.com. Donations to offset printing and mailing costs would be appreciated and are tax-deductible. They should be made payable to the Council for Secular Humanism and marked "Mentor Connection," and sent to P.O. Box 664, Amherst NY 14226-0664.


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