A few years ago, when I was mentoring with Strong Women, Strong Girls, we asked the girls to reflect on things for which they were thankful.  One bright young fourth-grader named Sharon responded with the following:
I am thankful for SWSG because they have fun activities and my favorite parts are bios and writing in journals.  I was in SWSG last year and I’m glad I’m in it again.  They help us learn and they play music for us to listen to when we do journals and I love music.  SWSG ROCKS!
I love Sharon’s enthusiasm!  Now that it’s November again, I’ve thought about how thankful I am for Strong Women, Strong Girls.  I have been part of the organization since 2006, and it has definitely had an impact on my own development as I continue to work toward social change.  I am also thankful for the role it has played in the lives of the girls with whom I work.  I can see the impact it has on them, and the way that it helps to build a strong female community.
Sharon continued in her writing:
I’m also thankful for SWSG for teaching me lots of things and playing fun games and letting us play outside if we have time and helping me climb on monkey bars and saying “wow” or “woah” when I climb very high.  SWSG ROCKS!!!!!!
People often have trouble defining what exactly a mentor is and I think that Sharon described it perfectly.  A mentor is someone who says “wow” and “woah” when you climb high, literally here, but also metaphorically.  I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have a community of people who have celebrated my successes.  They have mentored me and been an important source of support.
So, it’s that time of year again.  Let’s take some time to give thanks to Strong Women, Strong Girls, and everything that it has accomplished.  But also, let’s give thanks to the mentors we have, the people who stand behind us and say “wow” and “whoa” as we climb towards our goals.