A 9-year-old boy is one of many who have spent their younger years having trouble in school, said Noble Willie Butler, chairman of Shriner as Mentors, a mentoring program also known as SAM.

But the child’s involvement in SAM has shown positive results.

“When I started working with him he had a behavioral problem,” Butler said. “But now he doesn’t get into trouble anymore, and moved up to the next grade level.”

The SAM program, of Nubia Temple #191, has about 20 mentors who help young boys between the ages of 8 and 18. Butler said the program focuses on three key areas — improving social skills and behavior, improving education and widening horizons.

“We try to show them things they’ve never seen or done before,” he said. “We are different from a whole lot of other programs, and the way we are different is our program is school- and community-based. We help with things in school and outside school and it’s only for males.”

SAM is holding its second annual Bump Bowling event from 11:45 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Hallmark Lanes in Killeen. The free event is designed to help educate male youths on the program’s benefits.

“We are going to bring the kids out and let them have a great time,” he said. “We break them down into six groups and give out trophies to the kids in each group with the highest score, and we are going to educate them a little bit.”

Besides bump bowling, the event will include food and drinks. For more information, call Butler at (210) 386-5623.

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