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Mentoring for Youth in Schools and Communities

NCJ Number
Date Published
Publication Series
This video teleconference explains the rationale, principles, and results of successful mentoring programs for children at risk and presents profiles of three effective mentoring programs for children and youth.
Speakers include Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Director Shay Bilchik, the Executive Director of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America, a representative of an organization that evaluated the structures and impacts of mentoring programs, representatives of the three programs described, mentored youth, and adult mentors. An introduction notes that some 15 million at-risk youths would benefit from mentoring programs and that effective programs have substantially reduced the likelihood that mentored youth would start using drugs or alcohol, while increasing school attendance and grades. A youth describes a mentor as a cross between a parent and a friend. The discussion also notes that four elements are essential to a successful mentoring program: (1) careful screening and selection of mentors; (2) thorough training of mentors; (3) careful matching of youth and mentors; (4) and ongoing supervision that involves contacts with the youth, the parents, and the volunteer. The programs profiled are the Valley Big Brothers Big Sisters in Phoenix; the Ten Point Coalition in Boston, involving a broad approach to mentoring and extensive involvement of the religious community; and LA Team Mentoring in Los Angeles, which blends group dynamics with the traditional benefits of one-to-one mentoring. Questions from viewers at the 500 downlinked sites and answers from speakers
Date Created: August 5, 2014