Children or youth in care or involved in government supports are connected to trained and supported mentors. They will engage in a healthy and sustainable mentoring relationship and are more likely to successfully transition to adulthood.
- Where: Varies within individual communities and areas
- Location: Red Deer , Sylvan Lake , Innisfail , Delburne , Bowden , Spruce View , Penhold , Springbrook , Elnora
- When: Any Time
- Community-Based Program
- Mentees are 5-24 years of age
- Programs for youth that are in care, leaving care, or involved with government services
- Mentors can be age 18 and older
- Mentoring relationships spend a minimum of 6 hours a month together
- Expectations of a minimum of a year volunteering
In 2014, Red Deer became one of three mentoring organizations to pilot the expansion of mentoring programs for children and youth in care. Our focus is to better understand the conditions that lend to lasting and supportive mentoring relationships and to document the successes, challenges, and learnings along the way.
As a result of being matched, youth reported feeling more supported and less alone, valued having someone to go to for help, for advice and see as a role model. Mentors used descriptors like “positive”, “more open”, and “confident” when describing the changes they show in their mentees. Staff noted mentees are more accountable and are easier to contact when part of a match. Mentees also appear to be more comfortable talking about mental health with their mentors.
Mentors in this program receive enhanced training to ensure mentors are confident in their role as well as know where to go when in need of additional support. Some of the training includes, trauma and brain development, fostering a strength-based relationship, cultural awareness, attachment, and more.
“I see a confidence in her this year that I have not seen since she was 6 years old. Her Big Sister, and teacher and getting older are all factors of her changing. She is getting straight A’s in school, and is more stable. Her mentor is someone who is stable for her and is a consistent relationship for her.” (Caregiver survey quote, 2015).
This is a Community-Based Program that requires a minimum of two regularly scheduled outings a month of several hours each and a minimum of 1 year commitment. This program is either 1:1 relationships or we also accept Couples Matches. A Couples Match provides a unique opportunity to work together mentoring one child or youth. Working together can also provide you the extra support and guidance at more difficult times.
Goals of these mentoring relationships are that children and youth in care will develop relationships with adult mentors as they develop their leadership, communication confidence and sense of self; and children and youth in care will experience supporting, enduring, and impactful mentoring relationship.
HAVE A QUESTION?
Need more information about this program? We'd love to hear from you. Send us a message using our online form, email us directly, or give us a call.
Email: [email protected]