As parents, we seek mentors. We long for them and feel we need them to help us raise our children. I agree with the adage that “it takes a village to raise a child.” However, the village should be a supplement to what is being consistently provided by us as parents, the Original Mentors.

The Original Mentor exist to help others discover their gifts, passions, and purpose, then equip them to Think, Be, Do; thus thriving mentally (Think), emotionally (Be), spiritually (Be), professionally (Do), and socially (Do).

Vision: Help | Others | Potential | Explode
The Original Mentors vision is to Help Others Potential Explode (H.O.P.E.).

Parents…to help your kid(s) fully realize who God has created them to be, you must be who He designed you to become.

Parents, The Original Mentors, are best positioned “to teach or give help and advice” in real time and on a more consistent basis.

By equipping parents with insight, guidance, resources, and support that prepares and positions them to be the Original Mentors that God intended, I believe, we get to the root cause of many societal dysfunctions.  When youth see and understand that they have a promising future, it gives them hope, which gives them the incentive to thrive beyond what they ever thought possible.

According to Webster.com, a Mentor is “someone who teaches or gives help and advice to a less experienced and often younger person.” A good mentor is someone who knows the mentee’s personality, gifts, talents, dreams, and aspirations. The mentor understands the mentee’s opportunities for growth, their strengths, gifts and genuinely cares about the well-being and best interest of their mentee.

In my 20+ years of experience as a mentor, I realized that I often treated the symptoms or attempted to undo the effects of an absent or neglectful parent within the few hours a week. This was not always the case, but often times when talking to parents, I realized that some of them were unknowingly contributing to what they were asking me to address.

Mentors have been seen as the cavalry…those called in to save the day when a child has lost their way. Not in all cases, but the majority of the time, mentors are used to help a youth find their way. Instead, I dream of seeing youth whose parents have already helped their kids discover who God has created them to become, then properly matching them with a mentor who can guide them down a path that they believe is God ordained, according to their purpose and the experience of the mentor.

Parents are the “Original Mentors” who God intentionally paired with little miracles and charged the parents with the role of cultivating them into who He created them to be. I believe too many parents misguide the “miracle” that God has entrusted them with by “sub-contracting” their parental duties to the village (mentors), without maintaining primary oversight of the responsibility that they were designed to fulfill. Sure, someone can stand in or take over their role, but often times the emotional and psychological distress of the parent not operating in their assignment delays or minimizes the child’s ability to maximize their potential.

Parents….You Are The Original Mentor!

About Eugene L. Gatewood
I am a Christian, Husband (since 2002), Father (since 2005), and author (SuperPencilSaga.com) who is passionate about helping youth (and others) realize their greatest potential. I earned a Bachelors from Michigan State University, majoring in Child Development with an emphasis on Family & Community Services. I achieved a Masters from Oakland University (Rochester, MI) in Public Administration and a second Master’s degree in Leadership from Trinity International University. I started my professional career as an Intake Social Worker for a Foster Care agency in Michigan. I transitioned into Corporate America and progressed into middle management and was relocated to Illinois. After 10 years in Corporate America, I resigned to work in full-time ministry, where I am currently the Executive Administrative Pastor at a church in Bolingbrook, IL, since 2009.


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