Our Traditional Mentoring Program matches at-risk children between the ages of 7 and 15, in long-term, one-to-one relationships with adult volunteer mentors (who are at least 19 years old). While “matches” may formally remain in the program until the girls turn 18 or graduate from high school, many of their relationships will last a lifetime.
A prospective mentor participates in a thorough interview so that the program coordinator can get to know them (the child and their family also does the same). The aim is to make the best match possible – pairing a child sharing similar interests with the volunteer, or whose needs match with the mentor’s skills and experience. Volunteers also provide references, and the agency orders a criminal background check.
The initial commitment for a mentor is for one year. Visits with a child are three to four hours either weekly or bi-weekly. With the emphasis on building a relationship, the agency encourages no- or low-cost activities. Our agency even provides a free monthly activity open to all matches.
The following are variations of our traditional mentoring program:
School Based Mentoring – pairs high school and college students with elementary and middle school students who may be in need of additional academic support or personal encouragement.
Mentoring for Children of Prisoners – helps reach some of this special population of 3,000 at-risk children in Rhode Island who have at least one parent in a state or federal prison.
Military Mentoring – provides one-to-one mentoring services to children of active duty military and deployed parents, and also engages members of the armed forces and military veterans as volunteers.Big Couples – a new, innovative program launched just this summer which allows a married couple to share the mentoring responsibilities with a boy registered in the program.