Write Back @ You Connects Hamilton Students With Trinidad and Tobago Youth
Nathalia Mahabir ’17 recently established Write Back @ You, a pen pal program aimed at connecting mentors at Hamilton College with young students both domestically and internationally. Mentors at Hamilton develop a supportive and communicative relationship with mentees in order to provide encouragement, motivation and guidance.
Write Back @ You initially started as Mahabir’s Levitt Leadership Institute project. “It’s my way of giving back to my community while studying abroad,” she explained. The program allows her to follow her passion, which is to work with children with disabilities and who are underprivileged. Hamilton students are mainly paired with children from Trinidad and Tobago. Write Back @ You has been fully implemented into the children’s curriculum so that they can build social, writing and communication skills.
The program currently has 56 active Hamilton mentors and 86 students from the partner school in Trinidad and Tobago, Eeshe’s Learning Center. Mahabir hopes to recruit more mentors and extend the program into the Caribbean. She is also currently planning a trip to visit the school during the 2016-17 academic year.
Mahabir, a psychology major, is co-president of Minds for Change, an Oral Communication Center tutor, and a site coordinator for HAVOC. She is also a volunteer for Sidekicks and is part of event staff. Mahabir previously served as social chair for the Caribbean Students Association and the vice president for the International Students Association.