Park and Rec Mentoring Program to Provide Valuable Work Experience for Local Youth

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department will hold an orientation for youth participating in the inaugural Recreation Employment Corps Mentor / Mentee program on Wednesday, Feb. 8, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m., at the Bette Rae Thomas Recreation Center, 2921 Tuckaseegee Road.

Recreation Employment Corps is a program designed to provide teens, ages 14 – 17, with the opportunity to gain first-time work experience and positive life skills by serving as mentees at various recreation facilities around the County. Each participant will work closely with an assigned recreation supervisor for 10 hours a week through November. Mentees will be compensated for their time and will be subject to policies and procedures just as other County employees are.

Recruitment for the REC program began in fall 2011. Park and Rec staff identified potential candidates – teens currently active in Park and Rec programs – and developed an application process consisting of a written essay and an in-person interview. Sixty teens applied and 20 were selected to participate.

“We are proud to offer this wonderful program which gives students the chance to develop positive working skills and habits which will serve them throughout life,” said Park and Recreation Director Jim Garges. “It is a great example of Park and Rec’s commitment to providing an atmosphere that stresses both education and personal growth.”