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News > OD Publications > An Interview with Robin Cox

An Interview with Robin Cox

"Little seems to be planned for guiding young people to develop meaningful relationships with their peers and others."
The new book from Robin Cox
The new book from Robin Cox

Q and A with Robin Cox (1971G)

Q. Why did you write this book?

Much of the recent research about the impact of COVID-19 on communities has highlighted increased levels of anxiety and depression. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is also impacting education in a significant way, while social media platforms continue to expand at a rapid rate. Yet, little seems to be planned for guiding young people to develop meaningful relationships with their peers and others. This book speaks into that space, and advocates for a global spirit of mentoring movement.

Q. What is unique or special about this book?

I have done extensive reading of research about youth mentoring, and the health and wellbeing of young people. There is little about effective pastoral care and mentoring of young people post the pandemic. I wanted to share some of the key findings of research in a user-friendly book, and provide proven strategies to encourage young people to fulfil their unique potential which I have gathered from over 50 years working as an educator, youth mentor program developer, and peer mentor program developer. I have not read a similar book written since the pandemic.

Q. Who is your intended audience?

In reality anyone who interacts with young people—educators, mentors, parents, youth workers, coaches, grandparents and family relatives.

Q. Anything significant about the Cover?

My family thought I had chosen the cover, as I am a recreational fisherman. Not the case. I love the cover designed by Savanah Landerholm at Wipf and Stock, my US publishers. When I communicated with her about it, she felt the analogy (adapted): ‘Give a person a fish, and you feed them for a day. Teach a person to fish, and you feed them for a lifetime,’ is so apt to the spirit of mentoring concepts shared in the book. Brilliant!

Q. How do you know there is a need for this book?

Look at the daily news and the statistics about young people playing truant from school, joining unruly gangs; the abuse of drugs and alcohol; so much antisocial behavior; the tragedy of the number of young people taking their lives. There is a better way moving forward and that’s what is covered in this book. There are many true stories included as an encouragement to the reader.

Q. What are three key points to take away after reading this book?

  1. Every life matters.

  2. Every life has a story -Empathize and try and walk in the shoes of the young people with whom we interact to understand them better.

  3. Young people want to be loved and cared for; they want to feel valued; they want to know that life has meaning and purpose.Become a non-judgmental cheerleader in their lives.

Q. Any last thoughts?

I remind readers a number of times in the book that the brain is still developing until a person is in their mid-twenties. So, as adults we need to be kind to ourselves when we move alongside young people on a journey through one of the most confusing times of their lives; we must not have unreal expectations; we must strive to be the wise guide on the side; we must have a great sense of humor and have lots of fun with the young people with whom we interact, always striving to be a positive person of influence.

Other recent mentoring books from Robin:

  • CHOICES: Encouraging Youth to Achieve Greatness
  • Mentoring Minutes: Weekly Messages to Encourage Anyone Guiding Youth.




260 FREE short mentoring podcasts

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