Skye Enfield-MacLean, and hundreds of local students just like her, is looking for a special gift this Christmas that cannot be bought in a store.
She is looking for time; specifically, YOUR time.
Skye is looking for a mentor. She, like many others in this community, is on a wait list with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Pictou County, until someone who can spare an hour a week comes along to provide a mentoring role.
The Grade 8 student attends East Pictou Middle School. She has been on the wait list for a mentor for several years. Surprising, since her interests are much the same as any other bright young lady her age: pop music, singing, dancing, writing poetry.
“I like crafts,” the 13-year-old offered. Everything from painting to needlework and all crafts in between. “And in the summer I like to go swimming and just do fun things,” she shrugs.
Skye lives in Barney’s River with her mom, Tracy Enfield, who works full-time for the Town of New Glasgow, and her dog Smoky. Since her mom is on the town’s public works crew, impending winter weather will mean an even busier work life for her.
“I want someone to just hang out with and who will just spend time with me,” Skye offered. The teen is a self-professed tom boy and loves to be outside, but she is equally content indoors crafting, cooking – her specialties are grilled cheese sandwiches and noodles – and making sure her chores are done. And her chores are always done, her proud mom beams.
Tracy said, “Skye and I are typically together 24/7, so I think it would be nice for Skye to have another influence in her life, someone she can spend time with and relate to, work on her self-esteem… I’d like her to get out, see other’s people’s perspectives, make more connections with others and have fun.”
Skye says she has been fortunate to have had the mentorship of a wonderful teacher at the Frank H. MacDonald School when she was in Grade 6, Mrs. Lockhart. This teacher instilled a love of creativity in Skye and taught her to knit and crochet. That gave Skye the confidence to hand sew her own doll clothes.
“She gave up her lunch time,” Tracy lauds. “She knew Skye was interested in this so she gave up her lunch times and taught Skye how to do all of this stuff.
“She was my favourite teacher, she was so nice,” Skye’s face virtually lights up at the mention of this positive role model.
It was a lesson in creativity — and friendship — that the mother and daughter have not forgotten.
And they’re looking to make those connections with a mentor again.
“I don’t need anything from anyone,” Skye says. “I just need your respect and your time.”
This Christmas, consider giving a child a gift that will last a life time. It doesn’t cost anything but will give lasting change to children, families and entire communities. It’s the gift that keeps on giving!
Skye Enfield-MacLean is looking for a Christmas gift that does not cost money — she’s looking for a mentor. (Jardine photo)