With Help of Mentors, Louise Archer Students Support Troops


(Thursday, November 16, 2006 8:29 AM EST

Students in the Louise Archer Elementary School mentorship program and their mentors from Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage are doing their part in spreading holiday cheer among U.S. troops abroad.

On Nov. 14, they created holiday greeting cards to send to military personnel stationed out of the country.

“The holidays can be a lonely time when you're away from home,” said Marina Mathews, Coldwell Banker's public relations specialist. “This is a great way to reach out to our soldiers.”

In addition to cards, the soldiers will receive CARE packages that are being assembled by students in Baltimore, who also have a partnership with Coldwell Banker.

The 75 military personnel who will receive packages and cards are friends or relatives of employees at the real estate firm.

The mentorship program at Louise Archer serves students in kindergarten through sixth grade, who are identified by parents and teachers as needing a little extra guidance.

Coldwell Banker employees volunteer as mentors, and are teamed up with these students. They spend about an hour a week together making crafts, eating lunch, or just chatting.

“The kids really blossom with their mentors and look forward to spending time with them,” said Louise Archer counselor Shannon Robinson.

The three-year program has been a growing success, and the school is very thankful to the community, Robinson said.

The opportunity to volunteer benefits the mentors as well.

“I'm a single mother of two small kids,” said Veronica Corbin, an office manager at the real estate firm. “I felt I needed to give back to someone else.”

Louise Archer Elementary School fifth-grader Travis Higginbotham displays a greeting card he made for U.S. Armed Forces personnel serving abroad as part of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerages' "Operation Thanks" program.

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