Research shows that significant positive impact can be made in the life of a young adult by having a consistent caring presence in their lives.
What does it take to be a mentor?
Being a mentor takes no special qualifications except a willingness to accept a youth as they are and commit to being in their life for a minimum of one year. Some other necessary qualifications are: a minimum of at least 6 hours each month to commit to the relationship, a driver’s license and insurance, and a clear background check.
What does a mentor do?
Mentors volunteer their time to develop a consistent, stable, positive relationship with an older youth in foster care. Mentors are not expected to act as social workers or parental figures. Their role is to be a cheerleader and friend that spends time with their mentee and LISTENS to them. Mentors meet with their mentees a minimum of twice each month and maintains weekly communication with them.
Where do the mentors and mentees meet?
Our program is a community-based model meaning that mentors meet with their mentees in the community in places such as coffee shops, restaurants, libraries, etc. Each youth’s situation will be unique so we work with case workers and other interested parties to determine the safest methods for mentoring meetings.
The Starting Strong team is involved with the mentor/mentee matches all along the way. Mentors receive 6 hours of training before meeting with their mentee. We will check in on you and your mentee monthly to see how things are going and offer suggestions for outings and conversation starters. Mentors are not in this alone; they are part of a team that comes together regularly to discuss their mentoring relationships and learn from each other.
What is Mentoring?
• One-on-one realtionship with a volunteer
• Weekly contact: In-person meetings 2-3 times a month
• Possibile activities: Shopping, meeting for lunch or dinner, sporting events, life skills development
Why do I need a mentor?
• Gives you someone to encourage you
• Provides someone outside the sytem to talk to and ask questions
• Lets you be yourself
• Wants to see you succeed
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