TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - With all the negative distractions out there, it can be difficult to keep kids on a solid path. However, a mentorship program in the Glass City is helping do just that.
Officer Jeremie Barclay with TPD and Bowsher Junior Andrew Roberts first met through the Mountain Mentors program.
"At first it was actually, my parents kind of tricked me into it," said Andrew.
Andrew says he's glad they did. He and his mentor share a unique bond and the one-on-one mentoring has helped bring him out of his shell.
"I'm more of a positive person. I really didn't talk to anyone," said Andrew.
Throughout the year, the mentors and mentees do a number of activities together, like spend time in the Metroparks. This summer, they'll take their adventures to new heights. It's why they call it Mountain Mentors.
"In July, we do our outdoor adventure where we go to the White Mountains of New Hampshire and we climb to the top of Mount Washington," says Officer Barclay.
The program is designed for at-risk kids. Three groups of five kids make the trip to the mountains each year. Andrew says his reaction to taking in the sights, actually frightened his mentor.
"'OH MY GOD!,'" he said. "And he ran up, he thought something was wrong."
Officer Barclay has mentored several kids over his years with the program and says he loves what it does for them.
"It's so important for them to experience more then just what we have in Toledo," he said. "Toledo is a great place to live, but there's so much going on. There are so many beautiful things to see."
Andrew will be taking the trip again this summer. His reaction at the top of the peak may not be as over the top as his first visit, but the experience will still be just as memorable.