A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, the kind of clothes I wore… But the world may be a much different place…because I was important in the life of a child.
LIFRC's Youth Mentoring Program has been successfully matching adults and youth on Lopez since 1997. What is a mentor? A trusted friend, a guide, a good listener, a responsive and reliable adult. A successful mentor enjoys working with children and is willing to make a commitment of time and self.
The initial time commitment for a mentor and mentee relationship is one year. However, most often this relationship continues on much longer. Some relationships begin in elementary school and endure through high school and even into adulthood. Although most students are in elementary school when paired with a mentor, middle and high school students may also be matched.
Mentors and mentees typically spend 6-8 hours together each month, enjoying a variety of activities, such as arts and crafts, board games, outdoor activities, sports and volunteering. There are currently over 25 active mentor-mentee pairs in the program.
In addition, Youth Mentoring offers four different Small Groups: Middle School Girls, High School Girls, Middle School Boys, and High School Boys. Youth are welcome to enroll in the small group that best aligns with their gender identity. We also proudly partner with the Equity Institute to offer La Cima Lopez Bilingual Youth Leadership.
To become a mentor, enroll youth in any of our programs, or learn more, please contact Susannah Dunlap.
You can start the Mentoring application process using the links below:
To start a mentor application, please click here.
To start a mentee application / para presentar una solicitud para jóvenes: click here / haga clic aquí.
This program is supported by the Washington State Healthcare Authority, San Juan County, Mentor Washington, Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction and our community.
Parent/Tot Social Groups
The Parent/Tot program provides enrichment to new families and prepares children for preschool. Parent/Tot groups are the first step on a continuum of community-supported education involving collaboration between LIFRC, the Lopez Children's Center and Lopez School.
Our English and Spanish parent leaders plan and facilitate parent-tot social groups using guidelines from the Kaleidoscope Play and Learn Curriculum, which includes arts and crafts activities, music, dance and games. Parents connect weekly with other parents who have children aged 0-5, to share and learn about the joys and challenges of raising children. This year we are happy to introduce Vroom literature and materials to our sessions as well for fun and easy early-learning experiences.
We are currently meeting at Odlin Park, Mondays from 11AM – 12PM! We will be in the Picnic Shelter through June 13th, taking a small break, and then resuming down at Odlin Beach starting again on July 11th.
For more information or to get on our mailing list for monthly updates, please email Katy Hill, Early Learning Programs Manager.
Therapeutic Play Program
“A Playroom for Me!” is our Preschool-based therapeutic play program. Students, referred to the program by teachers, staff or parents, spend 30 minutes in the playroom once a week. In this one-to-one, child-centered setting, children play through situations related to social and emotional skills. Research shows that children who receive this type of support in school may experience increased self-esteem, improved focus and ability to learn, and more positive social interactions.
The Therapeutic Play Program also runs at Lopez Island Elementary School as PIP (Primary Intervention Program). For more information on PIP, please contact Contessa Downey, Community Supports Director.
Lopez has always been a place where youth can find carefree enchantment, and LIFRC's youth programs build on that tradition. We are pleased to provide youth a chance to play, grow and learn with one another through workshops, day camps, adventures, and outdoor experiences. During this pandemic period, we strive to model community health practices, resiliency, and island ingenuity.
All programs are developed in partnership with San Juan County Health & Community Services to comply with safety standards. During 2021-22, the program is free to Lopez residents to support youth and their families during the pandemic.
2021/2022 school year: LIFRC is collaborating with the Lopez Island School District and Lopez Library to offer an after-school learning enrichment program for grades K-5. San Juan County has allocated ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) funding for childcare, which we use for staffing. The school provided an in-kind match of school facilities, as well as staff time to track attendance and be sure children go to the multipurpose room after school. The library is a vital partner - offering reading and literacy activities. Instructors provide an array of activities from arts and crafts, culinary, science projects, and dance. Come join the fun!
You can find after-school program sign-up information HERE.
Slots are available if you would like to join this fun, educational experience. Please contact Quaniqua Williams, Program Coordinator, at email@example.com if you have any questions.
LIFRC's Homework Club has been revamped during the pandemic. Our team of dedicated volunteer tutors (many of whom are former teachers) partner with the Lopez Island School District to provide academic tutoring and engagement support for Lopez School students in grades 4-12, including:
small group and individual tutoring
specialized academic tutoring for students who are also English Language Learners
extended paraprofessional services to students enrolled in IEPs
To connect with free tutoring services, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Summer Camps & Workshops
Each year, LIFRC Summer Camps and Workshops combine the beauty of the island with the talents of our community and visiting instructors to present a fabulous array of youth (and adult!) activities.
This year, we will be offering a Summer Day Camp for K-5 and Specialty Camps for youth in 6th grade and up and for tots. Please visit our Summer Camps and Workshops page for registration and scholarship details.
Sign up soon, as many camps will fill fast!
This program is supported by our generous community of individuals, businesses and organizational donors.