Bolder Options
Program Coordinators and Mentors Make Time for Youth

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Meet four amazing, talented women who are helping Bolder Options pursue its mission of teaching youth to succeed in all of life’s races.

Bolder Options is a one-on-one, activity based mentoring program for middle school youth, ages 10-14. The program was first established in 1993 in the Twin Cities and expanded to Rochester in 2010. Its focus is on healthy youth development—healthy living, emotional development, community connectivity and lifelong learning.

Program coordinators create partnerships
Program Coordinators Carla Anderson and Sarah Schaller match youth with mentors and cultivate partnerships with community organizations that enrich the program. The enrichments, Carla says, “foster, for our youth, lifelong learning, as well as a greater understanding and appreciation for their community…a place where they are valued and feel they belong.”

Carla is married and is mom to two grown sons. Before becoming a program coordinator at Bolder Options, she was a mentor. She embraces nature, fitness and wellness/mindfulness, all of which are the focus of her blog, fitbffs.com. She is a former marathon participant and has biked RAGBRAI twice. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, biking, traveling and exploring state and national parks. Next year, she hopes to complete a 500-mile pilgrimage, the Camino de Santiago in Spain.

Sarah Schaller is married and is mom to three children. She has experience with the foster care system and in youth ministry. She loves the outdoors and spending time with her two rescue dogs. She is also involved in theatre, as both an actress and a director. She enjoys her work with Bolder Options for the impact the program has on youth—watching progress made over the year, seeing their growth. She is appreciative of the community partnerships, such as with the Rochester Police Department and TerraLoco, which provide resources to the youth.

Mentors nurture relationships
Halley Sobeck and Kasey Kuker are busy professionals who make time to support area youth through mentoring. Mentors meet with their mentees once a week for a year and get to know each other through a Bolder Options hosted activity or one they choose personally. Halley is a supervisor with the Medical and Administrative Support Operations team at Mayo Clinic, is married and is mom to 1-year-old son, Walter. She loves to travel, read, create art and do home improvement projects. Halley has been a mentor for three years. She cherishes her friendship with her mentee, Aalyah. “Being an adult that she can trust and depend on is something I do not take lightly,” Halley says. “I feel honored to be able to help her grow into the inspiring, successful and happy person I know she’ll become.” Halley and Aalyah have enjoyed a variety of activities together, including 10-mile bike rides and 5K runs and walks, painting classes, touring the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and exploring Winona State University. Together, the two planned a Girl’s Empowerment Night in August at Woodside Park in Rochester.

Kasey is an education specialist in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at Mayo Clinic. She is also the owner, manager and lead singer of Branded: Hot Country. She is active in local theater and sings the national anthem at many events each year. She has been a volunteer half-marathon pacer since 2014 and is involved in various marathon clubs and serves on the board of the Rochester Running Club. Kasey enjoys traveling, cooking, writing poetry and playing piano. Her love for volunteering and helping others led her to be a mentor. She loves spending time with her mentee; she has been teaching her how to ride a bike.

Bolder Options is seeking mentors; visit bolderoptions.org for more information.

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