At our Volunteer Awards breakfast the winner of the 2017 William Forster Award was Wayne Ashdow. Wayne began volunteering with TRY Mentoring in May 2015 as a 1-to-1 mentor.  He was matched twice, with two young males who had a lot of very significant challenges in their life.  Wayne gave it his all and consistently showed up each week to spend time with his mentee, to let them know he’ll be there for them even when things are at their toughest.  While both young people ended up being unable to continue with their engagement in the program, this did not hinder Wayne’s commitment to supporting young people in the community.

At the beginning of 2016 Wayne moved on to become part of TRY Mentoring’s group program, Mentoring in the Hood (MITH), in Carrum Downs.  While there, he and one of our other volunteers, Steven, ran a boxing/fitness group for several young males.  Over the course of the year Wayne provided a supportive and safe environment for participants to have fun, get to know each other, and learn various boxing self-defence techniques.

Now, in 2017, Wayne remains an active volunteer with TRY Mentoring.  He is currently involved in another boxing/self-defence MITH group, this time in Seaford, where he continues to provide a supportive and fun space every week for young people in the community.  TRY Mentoring would not be able to achieve what it does without its volunteers, and Wayne gives us a prime example of the positive impact a mentor can have on the lives of young people –thankyou Wayne and congratulations for winning this award.