Daily Point of Light # 2600 Jan 22, 2004

On most weekends you can find Councilman Scott Reddin mentoring, driving, distributing food to the homeless or raising awareness about the dangers of drunk driving. And this is only on the weekends!

Volunteers in Protective Services (VIPS) was established in 1977 to match trained, carefully screened, caring adults with abused, neglected, isolated and/or troubled Bergen county children. Referrals come primarily from the New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services, the state child protection agency. Councilman Reddin completed training in 1996 and has since served as a VIPS Volunteer brother to eight boys, each having numerous behavioral challenges and family issues. Since 1996, Councilman Reddin has spent literally hundreds of hours in shared activities and experiences with these boys, one-on-one, and has provided his mentees with a caring shoulder to lean on and an open heart that will listen to them.

Councilman Reddin gives of himself freely and willingly. He sets boundaries with the boys he mentors, having told each and every one that all he asks for is a phone call if the mentee cannot make their scheduled time together. Acknowledging the frustrations he has experienced in some of his mentoring relationships, Councilman Reddin recently stated that he’s learned what unqualified love is all about. He has made himself available to these boys; he does not judge them and he does not expect anything from them except that they believe in themselves (and that phone call if they have to cancel!). He is an incredible advocate for these children, which overflows into his day job as assistant to U.S. Representative Steve Rothman (D).

And as if that isn’t enough, Councilman Reddin is the honorary disc jockey of the Volunteer Center of Bergen County! With no hesitation and never a fee, you can find him spinning out those songs at mentoring program events and at other Volunteer Center events. A boy at heart himself, Councilman Reddin makes sure the kids are dancing and laughing, as he recognizes how important it is for these children to be just that…children.

Councilman Scott Reddin exemplifies the qualities that we need in mentors: caring, empathy, the ability to listen but not judge, and he is the embodiment of the word “fun”. He is an incredible role model to each and every boy he mentors. He has enabled the boys he has mentored through the years to believe that they can achieve anything they hope to, with help from caring and sensitive adults.