Raewyn Lindsay has been an invaluable mentor for Graeme Dingle Foundation Southern’s Career Navigator programme at Gore High School for three years. We asked her to share a little more about her role and why she does it.
How and why did you first get involved?
I wanted to give back to our local community and saw a need to support our young people, especially as they transition from High School into Tertiary Study or the workforce. This was highlighted to me when my own children were a similar age and there was nothing in schools to help them with work-ready and financial literacy skills.
It has always been a real passion of mine to share financial knowledge and skills in the HR space such as interview preparation. I heard about what Graeme Dingle Foundation Southern does through its Career Navigator programme and saw this as an opportunity to share some of the skills and knowledge I have gained.
What do you enjoy about it?
I love getting to know the students and hearing about their future plans. I also love seeing them grow in confidence and they ask great questions.
What impact can you see Career Navigator has on the students?
I can see that Career Navigator helps build the student’s confidence and helps them be better prepared as they think about leaving High School. They learn great skills which will help them prepare for study or job interviews and they also get the opportunity to develop leadership and organisation skills when they undertake their community project as part of the programme.
Have there been any stand-out students or moments for you? Why did they stand out?
Every week is really enjoyable, but the standouts each year for me have been how appreciative the students are and I love when you meet them outside of school and they’re happy to have a chat. The 2022 class did a fabulous job raising $600 for Starship hospital through a sausage sizzle and basketball tournament, the 2021 class were amazing at cake decorating, and ten pin bowling in 2020 was very competitive and a lot of fun.
How has your experience as a mentor helped you learn or grow?
My experience as a mentor has helped me realise that there is a real need to support our young people, especially with financial literacy and skills preparing for work or study.
Anything else to add?
I am fortunate that my employer SBS Bank is supportive of my role as a mentor. I have even encouraged other colleagues in Invercargill to sign up! Our SBS values align nicely with what Graeme Dingle Foundation stands for and my own personal values.
I’d thoroughly recommend this programme to any potential mentors – it’s a great way to help give back to our community and hopefully make a difference in the lives of some great young people.