When Take Stock in Children mentor Kristina Welburn moved to Key West 15 years ago, she immediately looked for ways to make a difference in her community. In addition to her work as a mentor, Kristina tutors ESL students and organized self-defense classes for women. Civic engagement comes naturally to Kristina; her grandparents actually traveled to Mississippi to advocate for school integration in the 60's.
When Kristina saw an ad from the Take Stock in Children Monroe program asking for mentors, it was natural that she sign up.
Kristina was paired with Brianna Willett who she eagerly visited once a week.
Her mentee had struggled with some of her grades and had been limited to afterschool activities because she was needed at home to care for her younger brothers. Kristina was able to support Brianna and helped her find ways to manage all her responsibilities. Kristina’s dedication has paid off. This year, Brianna is thriving in her senior year and getting ready to go to college. With straight As and a positive attitude, this mentor says she is extremely proud of the young woman Brianna has become.
When asked why she thinks Brianna has been so successful – she said “the most important role I played in Brianna’s life was to be a consistent, reliable adult who was there to listen to her.”
Inspired by the student lives being changed by the program, Kristina wrote a grant on behalf of Take Stock Monroe and secured $2,500 for additional scholarships. Kristina says she sees the impact of the program on the youth in her Monroe County community and is planning to also leave a legacy donation to Take Stock in Children. She wants to make sure future students, like Brianna, have the opportunity to succeed.