Mower Refreshed Mentoring

Creating Mutual Learning on Living Well Cross-Culturally!Mentoring Article

One of the characteristics of Mower Refreshed’s initiative that inspires volunteers who dream, design, and drive the efforts is relevancy in relation to limited resources. At our quarterly leadership meetings and monthly team meetings we consistently explore if the work we are doing is relevant to those we are seeking to engage and does it impact the Community Health Needs Assessment’s top three health concerns identified by community members in Mower County.

Mayo Clinic Health System Albert Lea & Austin (MCHS), who anchors Mower Refreshed, and Mower County Community Health (MCCH) have begun the 2016 Community Health Needs Assessment ( community-health-needs-assessments) to discover what our communities in Mower County perceive as the most current health concerns. This is exciting as we have the privilege of hearing directly from people that both MCHS and MCCH serve. What we learn from these assessments will drive the Mower Refreshed teams in their efforts. Sometime it causes Mower Refreshed Leadership to reevaluate with the teams to assure we are relevant with our limited resources which is the case in the newest evolution of our engagement.

Latinos Saludables, a MR team that was developed in 2012 to support and engage the Latino population in Mower County in healthy living has accomplished much and is ready to expand its impact by evolving from a formal team focused only on Latinos to welcoming other cultural groups to engage. Mower County has continued to grow in diversity and new opportunities to engage with additional cultural groups calling the area home and desiring to become a part of their new community.

It is this opportunity that inspired Mower Refreshed to broaden the engagement and co-learning beyond our Latino community members to all cultures settling here. Mower Refreshed (MR) Mentoring is an invitation for MR team members to formally invite people they meet from other cultures who are passionate about wellness to one of the MR team meeting (Healthier Choices, Mental Fitness, Workforce Wellness), supporting them as a mentor at the meeting.

Our hope is that as community members from different cultures are personally invited by a Mower Refreshed team member in a mentoring role, we will be providing a safe space to learn how meetings work, how they can engage, co-equip, and co-empower us with the knowledge they hold. We are intentionally striving to offer our newest community members a point of connecting to explore leadership skills and share their wisdom on wellness that will surface new solutions and understanding, all leading to meaningful engagement cross-culturally!