Healthy You, INC Launches Pilot Mentoring & Leadership Program

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DOTHAN, AL--Organizers say instead of overhauling those students who aren't leaders this pilot program wants to better those students who are already leaders.

In every classroom sits leaders and those who many seem to follow.

"We've identified three types of leaders in this program. There's positional leadership that is you're my boss or club leader. We've identified relational, where you get five kids together in a group, you're going to know who the leader is and then you have inspirational leadership where if they show up wearing orange sunglasses within a week there will be more kids wearing sunglasses," said Healthy You INC., Jason Williams.

The group Healthy You, INC. says, those are the kids they want for their pilot training focus group for the UpTeen peer Mentoring and Leadership program.

"We give them enhanced relationship and leadership skills training so they can go into their schools and communities and be a force for positive change," said Williams.

The program will include 32 students from both Northview and Dothan high schools.
Those students are current 10th and 11th graders.

"I've submitted the applications to various teachers and they'll make the nominations to me," said DHS Guidance Counselor, Celeste Morehead.

The teachers choose who they nominate based on the student's character.

"Kids that are in leadership roles within the school like leaders of clubs and also leaders who don't have titles but they're leaders in a group among their peers and maybe even those who are just trend setters," said Morehead.

Once the teacher nominates the student, the student has a separate form to fill out.

"I think it'll be a great thing for our kids because it'll teach them how they can lead others into being problem solvers."

The program launches in June and wraps up in August.

The funding for this program came from the Wiregrass Foundation.

Organizers hope the students who participate in this will eventually take on mentoring positions.

If the program proves to be successful, organizers hope to continue it throughout the school system.

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