GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 18

cover story “Input your ZIP Code and up pops a mentoring opportunity.” experience that I have right now with Amina. I am not confused about what my priorities are and what is central and most important in my life—and it’s family.” The National CARES Mentoring Movement is a call to African Americans to mentor at-risk youth. However, when asked if others—non-African Americans—who believe in the cause can be part of the effort as well, Taylor exclaims: “Absolutely! We need all hands on deck. We just need more African Americans to step up because too few of us have.” She explains that a “very simple model” was created so people could log on to www. caresmentoring.com, input their ZIP Code and how many miles they are willing to travel, and a menu pops up of mentoring opportunities in their community. “You decide what kind of mentoring you want to do—whether it’s in-school mentoring, one-to-one mentoring, faith-based mentoring—and just take on a child,” Taylor says. For example, volunteers can be mentors to young people who are part of faith- and community-based organization programs, in-school- or after-school programs, and other programs supported by mentoring organizations. “I want us African Americans to galvanize our energy, our passion and our power, and focus those on the critical needs of our children, the mothers and fathers of our tomorrow—that’s what I’m asking for. Fortunately, you’ll see there are some committed non-African Americans, committed white sisters and brothers, white loving people who will go into prisons and mentor young people who are transitioning out. We have too few African Americans who have made the time to do that. And it’s not pointing the finger negatively at the black community; it’s like black folks are stressed out. We have fewer goods and services in our communities, we have more families struggling than our white counterparts and we have more pressures on us in the workforce. We care deeply about our children, Taylor says: “Oh, I have to tell you, when people ask me if there’s anything you wish you could do over again (the expectation is that a person who does spiritual writings would say, ‘Oh no,’ that ‘everything is always in divine order and there’s no regrets’), I do have one: I just wish I had been a different mother. My daughter was born when I was 23, and my marriage broke up when she was 6 weeks old. I had joined Essence at the time, and I was struggling with a job that was trying to consume me. I was not making a great deal of money, and I was under a great deal of stress and not understanding the gift and the blessing of being a parent. My focus was on keeping a roof over our heads and food on the table and not on the kind of time and attention and nourishment that all children need. As my career grew and the demands became even stronger, my daughter got less and less of me. When I look back on that experience, I could have organized my life differently so that she remained the center of it and my work also could have been central. I didn’t know that then. This is a very different 18 GRAND FEBRUARY 2009
http://www.caresmentoring.com http://www.caresmentoring.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - February 2009

GRAND Magazine - February 2009
GRAND View
Contents
GRAND Central
On the Cover: Susan L. Taylor, One in a Million
Get a Job!
The Healthy Crib
Movin’ to the G’Kids
Closing In
10 Disney Secrets
Ask GRAND
Just the Family We Are
Grand Prix: 0-3
Left Behind
Cycle Safe
Resources
GRAND Finale
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND Magazine - February 2009
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cover2
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 3
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND View
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 5
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Contents
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 7
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 8
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 9
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 10
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND Central
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 12
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 13
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 14
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 15
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - On the Cover: Susan L. Taylor, One in a Million
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 17
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 18
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 19
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Get a Job!
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 21
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - The Healthy Crib
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 23
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 24
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 25
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Movin’ to the G’Kids
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Closing In
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 28
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 29
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 10 Disney Secrets
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 31
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Ask GRAND
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Just the Family We Are
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 34
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 35
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Grand Prix: 0-3
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 37
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Left Behind
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 39
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cycle Safe
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 41
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 42
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Resources
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 44
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - 45
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - GRAND Finale
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cover3
GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - Cover4
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