MT. VERNON — The Mentors 4 Kids group will hold a special breakfast event April 23 to increase awareness of the M4K program and attract more mentors from the Mt. Vernon area.
Organizers say this is the first time M4K has had a breakfast of this sort.
Leaders from various Jefferson County community organizations, churches and businesses are invited, as are other interested parties.
At the event, those in attendance will hear about the benefits of the mentoring program.
The local leaders will then be challenged to recruit a volunteer from their organization to make a one-year commitment to mentor a child.
The breakfast will be held at 7 a.m. April 23 at the RARE Chop House, 224 S. 10th St. National Railway Equipment Co. is serving as the event sponsor.
“We thought this might bring (more) awareness of our program to a bigger group,” said Vickey Taake, executive director of M4K. “It’s really a shared responsibility to nurture our young people and all come together.”
Mentors 4 Kids, or M4K, is a nonprofit group that seeks to provide children in need with an adult mentor. The program serves kids ages 5 to 17 who lack a positive adult role model in their life.
M4K covers a six-county area in Southern Illinois that includes Jefferson, Williamson, Franklin, White, Gallatin and Saline counties.
Taake said the group is trying to grow its program in the Mt. Vernon area. Currently, in Jefferson County, four children have M4K mentors and there are six kids on the waiting list who do not have a mentor.
The April 23 breakfast will feature guest speaker Col. Christopher F. Lawson of the Illinois Army National Guard.
Also at the event, Jefferson County Circuit Judge David Overstreet will discuss the positive effects of mentoring and challenge those in attendance to recruit new mentors. Overstreet is also a board member for M4K.