Mosaic West Midlands is delighted to announce that long-term supporter, primary mentor and Regional Leadership Group member, Susan Noori, won the Hero of the Month Award for October 2013.
Susan and Mosaic have been working in partnership since 2010, when Susan first mentored girls at Bordesley Green Girls School. Following a very successful experience as a secondary school mentor, Susan migrated to the primary programme and since January 2012, she has been Lead Mentor at Anderton Primary School, Ward End Primary School and three times Lead Mentor at St John’s Primary School. Susan is also a Mosaic International Leadership Programme mentor and 2013, Susan was invited to join the West Midlands Regional Leadership Group with responsibility for Communications.
On hearing the news that Susan had been recognised at Hero of the Month for October 2013, Annalisa Lockett, West Midlands Lead Regional Manager commented: “I could not be happier, Susan is a very deserving winner. She is a valued and dedicated member of the Mosaic network, always exploring ways in which she can further support our work. From mentoring, being a member of the RLG to exploring wider opportunities with organisations such as the School of Architecture at Birmingham City University Susan is a wonderful role model with incredible passion for what we do. Working in partnership with her is a pleasure, privilege and an honour.”
Sumi Mistry, Session Leader at St John’s Primary School adds: “Susan is a dedicated and committed member of the Mosaic team and has supported us the past 3 years as Lead Mentor. Her knowledge and enthusiasm of the programme along with her happy and bubbly personality, her ideas and motivation has had great impact on the lives of our girls and mums”.
Student Fiza said: “Susan is a very kind and helpful person. I really enjoyed working with her,” and Asiyah who added “Susan is a nice caring person. She helped me understand the questions and gave me support and help.”
Reflecting on the girls’ comments, mum Sonia said: “Susan is a kind person. She helped me and my daughter with filling in the books”, and Naima concluded with: “Susan is very supportive and helped me and my daughter.”
In support, Safeena Rahman, a mentor at the school also commented: “Susan has been an inspirational lead mentor who has guided me through every stage of my journey at St John’s School by providing continuous support, encouragement and advice. Susan demonstrates the key attributes of a positive role model and mentor which are reflected in the way she has led and guided the mentors and mentees alike.
From the outset of the programme, I have watched Susan work with the mentees to develop their skills and confidence; always trying her best and never giving up when explaining topics under discussion which mentees found difficult to grasp. She has shown empathy towards the mentees whom I have seen flourish and grow in confidence under her guidance.
Susan is a dedicated lead mentor who has shown continuous support to the programme. This was my first attempt at mentoring and I could not have asked for a better mentor to guide me through my journey. Always positive, smiling and full of praise for the mentees, mentors, and session leader, I cannot think of anyone more suited to the Hero of the Month award.”
How long have you been volunteering as a Mosaic mentor for?
I have been a mosaic mentor for more than 3 years.
What motivated you to want to become a mentor?
My passion to see girls and women reach their utmost potential in education and career.
Please tell us about a particular rewarding or special experience you have had as a mentor
I think every session is special. The most rewarding experience for me is watching a group of incredibly bright but shy girls gradually flourish with confidence and self-belief as the program progress. I also felt extremely happy when I heard a couple of mothers have decided to get into education as the result of the program.
What have you found challenging about mentoring?
In some instances, I have found myself in challenging situations by girls or mothers during group discussions. Mentoring is a two-way interaction, a give-and-take exercise. Becoming a mentor is not only about guiding others but mentors must also believe in what they are about to say. So, they made me think about issues that I had never thought about or things that I had them for granted.
And what do you do when you’re not volunteering?
I work as an academic researcher.
Would you recommend being a Mosaic mentor to others?
Absolutely; one cannot imagine how rewarding the mosaic mentoring is until they try it. I have worked with several mentors who have entered as new mentors, some of whom have returned for the second and third programme.
What makes a good mentor?
Passion, ready to be challenged, open, motivator, good listener and non-judgemental.
Would you like to be a mentor like Susan? We are recruiting more mentors across the UK and we would love to hear from you. Find out more about how you can get involved.