How did you first start working with Mentor, and what inspired you to join?
Mentoring was a logical step for me. I had been working for 15 years as an educator and day-care manager. I became more and more aware of how important communication was and how easily misunderstandings could arise. I also realized how unprepared young couples are when they become parents and how different each family is. After my first child, I decided to concentrate fully on parenting and began developing parenting seminars for parents with day-care children. I shared my essential, basic pedagogical knowledge from 15 years of experience. In 2016, I was recruited to join Mentor Germany, and it was the perfect time for me to expand my work to parents with young teenagers. By this time, my own kids were 12 and 14 years, and I had new knowledge, beyond early childhood years to share.
What is your role at Mentor?
I am head of parenting programs. I organize, promote, and give lectures for teachers, mentors, and parents in schools, online and in other settings. I also organize and run individual coaching sessions for parents.
What makes Mentor’s mission important to you?
My work has always been about supporting people – both small and big. I help them recognize their self-worth and develop their own potential. I consider puberty to be a very important phase of life in which children and adolescents need a lot of support. Even during my time as a kindergarten teacher, I was able to observe that children with parents who love them unconditionally develop much better. Children who are told by their parents, “You are ok,” and “I love you just the way you are,” have a higher resilience and cope better with life’s challenges. They find the courage to take responsibility for their lives and make healthy choices. But since not all children are lucky enough to have such parents, I think it is great when other adults are willing to step in and support them.
I see adults as responsible for creating a framework for children and young people in which they can develop their potential and find a good place in the world.Susanne Hübschle, Head of Parenting, Mentor Germany
What is your favourite part about working at Mentor?
I like it best when I have an impact on parents. If I succeed in bringing insights that will help them in everyday life come into meaningful contact with their children, I consider that my contribution to world peace!
How has your view of young people’s health and well-being changed, evolved or been constant since working at Mentor?
Before Mentor, I understood how different the living environments are for young children. Mentor reminded me of this but also showed me how different the development opportunities are for every young person.
Can you describe how the parenting program works at Mentor Germany?
The parenting program works through cooperation with the schools. Each school year, we offer them a ready-made bundle of workshops with student topics and parenting topics. They pick and choose which ones to run and share a ready-made flyer with dates and an e-mail informing the parents at the school about the workshops. In Germany, this is usually communicated with the help of the parent representatives of each school class, who are in contact with all parents.
What is your highest “parenting” topic priority in the coming year?”
In 2022, I developed an online course called “A Survival Kit for Moms with Teens”. This will be launched in 2023.
What are some of your favourite hobbies?
I enjoy sewing, travelling, and exercising out in nature, everything from hiking, swimming, skiing, snowshoeing, and walking. I love, spending time with my family or just sitting in a porch chair and chatting with friends.