Kids meet their mentors at annual ‘Ties That Bind’ event
ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - Phoebe had their annual “Ties That Bind” event. This is where young men get paired up with community leaders and learn how to tie a tie, but that’s not the only ties that are made.
Coordinators said they use the event for kids to see what their future can be and make the connections they need to make it happen.
Men from many different career paths spent their lunch teaching, listening and speaking with kids at the event.
11-year-old Colin Prat was one of those kids. He sat with men in law enforcement.
“I got to connect with some of the older guys in the police force and now I understand what they do for Albany,” said Prat.
Prat said when he grows up, he wants to be a rapper but does have a backup plan.
“My fallback plan is being an attorney at law,” said Prat.
In that career, this new skill is something he would need.
One of the people who taught that skill was Terrell Sevier. He’s a barber and now, a mentor to another kid. He remembers learning how to tie a tie from his dad but understands not all boys get that.
“A lot of young men are growing up in homes that are absent of a male influence and fathers, so something such as tying a tie becomes a very crucial necessity for a lot of young men as they move forward,” said Sevier.
Although the event is framed around learning to tie a tie, Coordinator Darrell Sabbs said it’s about hope and aspiration.
“Early intervention is the best prevention when it comes to crime. Young boys need to see that there’s hope and that young boys their age don’t always wind up as statistics,” said Sabbs.
Laquinton Spurlin, 12, said this showed him what he can do when he gets older.
“I told them I wanted to be an engineer inside the Air Force,” said Spurlin.
That aspiration is what Sabbs said is the point of Ties That Bind.
“You believe it more when you can see it. You can understand it more when you can feel it or touch it. It’s so important for these young boys to see they can be anything they desire to be,” said Sabbs.
Many of the mentors in the room acknowledge learning to tie a tie was a pivotal moment in their life.
Albany State University Head Football Coach Gabe Giardina said not only is it a skill you can use for an interview, but it also levels the playing field.
“When I got into a tie in an interview or classroom, they didn’t care about where I was from. All they cared about was my knowledge, content and character of my heart,” said Giardina.
There were a little more than 60 boys at the event. Coordinators said they are planning on having it again next year.
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