Camp Fire Green Country, Tulsa
Alexa Bottoms, program manager of Camp Fire Green Country in Tulsa, is being honored as an exemplary mentor to youth, her young supervisees and her colleagues. She was praised as a steady source of calm and an excellent listener in her work with youth and adults.
“Alexa has begun this program year in two capacities - serving and mentoring youth directly as well as serving and mentoring AmeriCorps members who serve and mentor youth directly,” said Program Director Jenny Briggs. “As a result, Alexa brings her skills and capacity as a mentor to a wider level, promoting positive youth interaction, skill and spark development, and organizational growth, through her work as Program Manager. Her influence is strong, positive, and unique, and our team would not be the same without her.”
Bottoms was praised as an “expert mentor to mentors,” providing insights into how to interact positively with youth, especially in difficult situations. She has co-facilitated trainings for Camp Fire staff and to other organizations serving youth. As Program Manager, Bottoms is working to expand Camp Fire’s mentoring reach into middle school.
Briggs described how Bottoms has a gift for connecting with mentees who are quiet and shy and encouraging them to step outside their comfort zones. In one case, Bottoms encouraged one of her mentees to talk about Camp Fire in her class and recruit new members to the club. She helped her mentee come out of her shell and exhibit more confidence.
Conversely, her mentee was able to help Bottoms grow as a leader and mentor.
“This youth is an example of a quiet strength, a characteristic that isn’t always valued or highlighted in our culture,” Bottoms said of her mentee. “She’s taught me to appreciate other youth with similar characteristics whom I might not have fully appreciated before. She’s taught me the importance of listening to my youth, because when I gave her my full attention, she would open up. She taught me the importance of being a positive adult, not just a club facilitator focused on completing a specific activity.”
About the Program: Through after-school clubs, youth leadership, camps and outdoor activities, Camp Fire provides opportunities for young people to find their spark, lift their voice and discover who they are.