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Building Relationships: A Guide for New Mentors

NCJ Number
Date Published
September 2007
48 pages
This guide provides mentors with 10 simple rules for being a successful mentor and quotes from actual volunteers and youth on what they have learned form the mentoring experience.
Mentoring is an increasingly popular way of providing guidance and support to young people in need. In recent years, youth mentoring has expanded from a relatively small youth intervention to a cornerstone youth service that is being implemented in schools and their communities. The Effective Strategies for Providing Quality Youth Mentoring in Schools and Community series, sponsored by the Hamilton Fish Institute on School and Community Violence and supported by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, is designed to give practitioners a set of tools and ideas that they can use to build quality mentoring programs. This revised guide in the series describes important features of successful mentors' attitudes and styles: 1) be a friend; 2) have realistic goals and expectations; 3) have fun together; 4) give your mentee voice and choice in deciding on activities; 5) be positive; 6) let your mentee have much of the control over what the two of you talk about; 7) listen; 8) respect the trust your mentee places in you; 9) remember that your relationship is with the youth, not the youth's parent; and 10) remember that you are responsible for building the relationship. The guide continues with more about each of these mentor characteristic. The importance of each is illustrated through the voices of actual mentors and young people talking about their relationships and how they came to be. List of additional readings

Date Published: September 1, 2007