Brayden walks across the football field, helmet in hand, with one of his teammates.

A positive mentor changes everything.

As someone who preferred staying home and playing video games, Brayden wanted to gain more confidence in his abilities in sports and school. At the start of high school, he tried out for the football team and was picked to play, but felt like he didn’t fit in with his teammates and soon dropped out.

Brayden knew he needed help getting the most out of high school.

Brayden approached All In for Youth’s mPower mentoring program to find a mentor who could help him get more involved in an active lifestyle and improve his confidence. He was soon matched with Chris, a young, active professional who wanted to work with a mentee interested in sports.

As soon as Chris was introduced to Brayden he recognized the shy, young man’s burning desire for personal growth and lifestyle changes. To support Brayden’s goals, Chris scheduled activities that would get Brayden trying fun, new things like playing golf, going to the movies and grabbing frozen yogurt.

Wanting to further motivate Brayden, Chris suggested he try out weight training. Chris accompanied Brayden to the gym and created a program with routines that slowly increased in difficulty. The program taught Brayden patience, while challenging him to compete with only himself to see results.

Without a high school diploma, youth are more likely to be unemployed, involved with the justice system, and rely on social services.

Brayden’s dream is to become a pro level football player or mechanic after high school, and Chris encouraged Brayden to rejoin the football team, while applying what he’d learned through weight training and dedicating time and energy to being a positive teammate.

Chris came to some of Brayden’s games to cheer him on, while further challenging him through weight training. With Chris’ support, Brayden worked so hard in his rookie year of football that he was awarded Lineman of the Year, something he says is the only thing he’s ever felt proud of accomplishing.

Brayden is Calgary.

Brayden was excelling in sports in a way he never thought was possible, and Chris knew that if he tutored Brayden and helped him apply his newfound focus and motivation to learning, he could excel at school too. Brayden is now receiving his highest-ever grades.

Looking to the future, both Brayden and Chris hope they have a long mentorship and friendship. They are both excited for Brayden to find his path and build his future. They know that together, anything is possible.


Calgary is a community of people. Meet a few of the 177,000 people like Brayden who were helped in 2015.

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