Newtown Friends Meeting
Of the Religious Society of Friends
What is a mentor?
A mentor is an adult who, along with parents, provides young people with support, counsel, friendship, reinforcement and a constructive example.
Mentors are good listeners, people who care, people who want to help young people bring out strengths that are already there.
A mentor is: A mentor is not:
a guide a savior
a friend a foster parent
a listener a therapist
a coach a parole officer
a responsive adult a cool peer
1. Is a structured one-to-one relationship or partnership that focuses on the needs of the mentored participants
2. Fosters caring and supportive relationships
3. Encourages individuals to develop to their fullest potential.
4. Helps an individual to develop his or her own vision for the future.
5. Is a strategy to develop active community partnerships.
FAQs of Mentors
…my help isn’t wanted?
It’s not easy to trust a stranger. It may take a while to build up a relationship and trust. Don’t interpret caution as a rejection. A young person may not show it – in fact, he or she may not even know it fully – but your help or interest is definitely wanted.
…if something really serious comes up?
Things do happen. Mentors have an important role, but that role does not include medical or psychological treatment, or family counseling. There are support systems in place for real emergencies. The most that is expected to do is help guide a young person to the appropriate source of professional help.
…I’m too different to relate?
Many first-time mentors worry about the age difference. In fact mentors report that mentoring a young person broadens their own horizons and deepens their understanding of other people.
…for some reason I can’t mentor any more?
Mentoring is not a huge commitment, but it is long-term. Ideally, mentors should stay connected at least until their mentee is 18. If unforeseen commitments come up, please contact the mentor program coordinators.
…if I am uncertain how to be a mentor?
If you are there for your young person, attempt to connect, do your best to listen and not to judge, attend some of the whole group activities, or come up with alternative activities, be honest and be yourself, you will have done everything right. Some young people are more receptive to having a mentor than others. Some may test the mentor’s commitment. Try not to take the behavior personally. Just keep trying your best.
…if my mentee and I do not seem to be able to find the time to get together?
Schedules are full and busy. All suggested activities are optional. As long as you make an effort to get together and show interest you are doing your part.
Organized pizza game night
Leaf raking in the fall
Carol singing in December
Philadelphia Area Walk for Hunger in April
Other activities for mentor pairs are up to individual pairs to determine.
A list of brainstormed ideas will be available on the website.
For more information about the Newtown Friends Meeting Mentor Program contact
Tim Mammel at 856-266-7636, email: firstname.lastname@example.org