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Communities In Schools raises $55,000 | Kim Egge named mentor of the year

Kim Egge, left, and Karis Cameron at the 2013 Communities In Schools of Federal Way fundraising breakfast held May 17. Egge was honored with the Tom Murphy Mentor of the Year Award. - Andy Hobbs/Federal Way Mirror
Kim Egge, left, and Karis Cameron at the 2013 Communities In Schools of Federal Way fundraising breakfast held May 17. Egge was honored with the Tom Murphy Mentor of the Year Award.
— image credit: Andy Hobbs/Federal Way Mirror

Mirror staff reports:

Communities In Schools of Federal Way netted more than $55,000 during its 2013 fundraising breakfast held May 17 at the Weyerhaeuser campus.

Last year's event raised about $44,000. All proceeds benefit Communities In Schools' mission to prevent dropouts in Federal Way. CIS pairs adult mentors with students in local elementary, middle and high schools.

Kim Egge was named the 2013 Tom Murphy Mentor of the Year for her work with Federal Way High School student Karis Cameron. Below is the speech Egge delivered at Friday's breakfast:

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I'd like to begin by thanking Communities In Schools for an outstanding program that brings kids and adults together. It truly is a win-win program.

I am blessed with an employer who not only supports my time mentoring, but has become a mentor himself. Thank you Byron Hiller and Coldwell Banker Danforth for never ever giving me an ounce of grief for being away from my job to mentor.

In 2003-2004, I went through the Federal Way Chamber's Advancing Leadership class. One of our most meaningful days was spent hearing from the late Phil Smart, of Phil Smart Mercedes, on what he called "The Third Eight." He broke our day down into three, eight-hour segments. We spend eight hours sleeping and eight hours working, but what do we do with the remaining eight?

This stayed with me for a couple of years, until our daughter went off to college. Since she is an only child, the house was very empty and quiet, and I missed the energy, imagination and interaction with children. Now was the time for me to put my "third eight" to use.

I was matched with a darling little fifth-grade girl named Karis. Short and shy, I thought to myself, how am I going to develop a relationship with this child? I had raised a boisterous and talkative daughter, so I was kind of out of my element. We started playing games — Crazy Eights, Mancala, Sorry. Pretty soon, Karis opened up, and we chatted about everything and nothing while playing.

As Karis grew emotionally and physically, we moved on to middle school and now high school. We tired of playing board games, so I introduced my love of crafting to Karis. What a trooper that girl is! My own daughter wanted nothing to do with "crafting with Mom."

Every year, Karis has sat through learning how to hook a rug, knit, embroider and bead. Some projects got finished, some didn't, but that doesn't matter, as the time spent with her every week is uplifting, heartwarming and special to me.

Thank you, Karis, for putting up with my crafting and never ever rolling your eyes when I suggested a new project.

I have watched Karis blossom from a reserved little girl to a confident, strong and smart young woman. This girl is bound for greatness, thanks to the support of her mom and a community that cares about her and other kids.

I look forward to watching her graduate high school, then college, then starting her career, and who knows — maybe even a husband and children.

I want her to know that she has a friend she will always be able to call on to be there for her through good and bad, a friend who will cry at her accomplishments or failures, and a friend to reach out to if she's just bored.

I would also like to ask you all to think about what you are doing with your "third eight." Maybe the timing isn't good for you right now, but I'd like to challenge each and every one of you to carve out an hour every week out of your busy schedule to share with a young person. you may make a difference in their life, you may not. But I can guarantee you that it will make a difference in your life.

I want to thank my husband and daughter, Steve and Caitlyn, for supporting me; Karis' mom for raising an awesome child and sharing her with me; Karis for just being Karis; and Communities In Schools for their wonderful mentoring program.

Learn more

Communities in Schools currently serves nearly 150 children in Federal Way — and there are more on a waiting list for a mentor. To learn more or volunteer, contact Caitlyn Remington at (253) 528-0847 or caitlynr@federalwaychamber.com.

 

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