Our Teen Mentor Program, directed by Lazaro Zayas, MD, offers adolescent girls the opportunity to learn the best ways to promote positive self-image. In meetings with our staff, the girls are exposed to mentoring workshops as well as an educational curriculum that covers various topics from culture and media to self esteem which has evidence to support the prevention of eating disorders as well as foster positive self image. These meetings also encourage the girls to discuss sources of stress in their own schools – such as bullying and pressure to achieve at the top level – that may dampen self-esteem. Then they create outreach and advocacy projects to address these issues as well as foster wellness; through this process, they strengthen their leadership and mentoring skills.
Our Teen Mentors have offered terrific feedback about the Program:
• "We are not perfect. None of us. The mentor group was a breath of fresh air for me because I could be honest about my fears, worries, and experiences. I felt it was a safe place for me to talk. That was amazing." [Melissa, age 18]
• "The Teen Mentor program has given me the power and the tools to attack the lifelong damage that can be caused when girls hate their bodies." [Laura, age 17]
Our Teen Mentor Program has grown in popularity and we anticipate that it will become a model program. We are thrilled that parents have expressed interest in setting up the Teen Mentor Program in other parts of the state.
Led by Lazari Zayas, MD, our 2015-2016 Teen Mentor Program is excited to welcome nominations of high school students who demonstrate leadership or mentoring qualities with an interest in promoting wellness and positive body image awareness through outreach and advocacy to join our prestigious teen mentor program.
We are excited to share a video created by our 2014-2015 Teen Mentor Program. As a culmination of their hard work, the group directed an original film, in which fellow classmates shared “letters to their younger selves” and presented at our Patient Family Education Day in Boston on June 13, 2015.