Charlotte children’s advocate named mentor of the year

Tijua Robinson dedicated to investing in youth

Each January, in conjunction with National Mentoring Month, the Mayor’s Mentoring Alliance honors the remarkable mentoring work that takes place in the Charlotte community.

The alliance highlights the achievements of individuals and organizations that have made it their mission to inspire and motivate youths and their families to continue to lead positive lives.

There were four award categories, including grassroots mentoring organization of the year, best collaboration in mentoring, mentor of the year and mentee of the year.

Tijua Robinson was chosen as a mentor of the year.

Tijua Robinson, affectionately known as Ms. T, is a leader and a mentor in the Grier Heights community who prioritizes the needs of her mentees over her own.

She mentors young men and women at the Grier Heights Community Center, where youth are provided one-on-one academic tutoring and personal development workshops weekly through their kickback program.

Robinson had helped students to boost their grade point averages, which has led to several youths being accepted to 4-year colleges.

She has been instrumental in boosting her mentees’ self-confidence, so they can avoid obstacles such as homelessness, unemployment, and addiction, and even hired her mentees to serve as camp counselors during the coronavirus pandemic.

“This past year has displayed our need for meaningful relationships more than ever. You rose to the challenge and persisted. You prioritized healthy relationships and served our youth during a time when they needed additional support the most,” said Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles.

The alliance recognized Robinson for her dedication and passion for investing in youth and seeing them reach their highest potential through supporting their families as a whole and exposing them to opportunities and experiences that will enhance their social capital.

Lyles acknowledged the meaningful work performed by mentoring agencies and individuals in Charlotte, along with the dedication required to support the social and emotional well-being of our future community leaders.

“To serve as mentors, we know firsthand the characteristics that best accompany the role of a generous spirit. An ear to listen without judgment. The ability to relate to youth while encouraging and supporting them in pursuit of their own destiny,” Lyles said.

The Mayor’s Mentoring Alliance connects Charlotte organizations to promote mentoring and its best practices through training sessions and workshops, recognition and establishing quality standards for mentoring in the city.

Click here to learn more about the Mayor’s Mentoring Alliance.

If you have an inspiring story to share, email Kevin Campbell, WSOC-TV/WAXN-TV/Telemundo Charlotte public affairs manager, at