Mentorship program partners with local school district to empower students

Published: Oct. 16, 2020 at 5:25 PM CDT
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -One man is turning a personal tragedy into his life’s mission.

In the Eau Claire Area School District, a mentoring program is looking to make a difference in the lives of African-American and biracial students.

Power of Perception started hosting meetings in February before the pandemic pushed their program into a virtual format.

Dennis Beale saw this group as his way to overcome the loss of a loved one. His uncle passed away last year in Chicago from complications related to a gunshot wound.

“One of my biggest, I guess you could say, things I was battling with when it came to his death was what if I had the opportunity to mentor the young man or the young lady that pulled that trigger, you know, he would still be here today. You know, so that was my father figure," Beale said.

Beale’s Power of Perception focuses on connecting middle and high school students with mentors.

The hope is to show students what they can achieve.

Elissa Knight is with the Eau Claire Area School District. She says this group is a place for these students to build relationships.

“It’s just a really positive safe space to talk about everything from what it’s like to live during the time of COVID and struggle with virtual learning to just what are their experiences like as Black and biracial students,” Knight said.

Power of Perception currently has around 15 mentees in their program. The organization also partners with the Boys and Girls Club of the Greater Chippewa Valley.

It hopes to continue to expand the program in order to reach as many students as they can.

To learn more about Power of Perception click here.

Copyright 2020 WEAU. All rights reserved.

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