Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Value of Mentoring Youth

[Editor’s Note: As we enter the season of giving, I thought it might be appropriate to share an article about giving back. I have been concerned about the lack of role models and adult guidance for many of our youth and it has been demonstrated that youth who have a formal mentoring relationship do better in school, stay in school, have lower incidence of substance abuse, and lower incidence of crime, not to mention an overall better future. As I began to investigate the statistics about the value of mentoring, I found that the results are compelling. Mentoring benefits not only the individual and the community, but also employees and businesses.

Most successful people know the value of mentors – I know I have been fortunate to have had several key mentors over the course of my life and career.

One of the things my mother used to say: “If something concerns you, stop whining about it and do something to make it better.” Years ago, I was a Big Brother for several years and it was very rewarding. I wanted to have a bigger impact. So, I joined the Board of Mentor Colorado (Colorado Mentoring Partnership). In Colorado almost 300,000 young people do not have a formal mentoring relationship. Mentor Colorado (Colorado Mentoring Partnership) is the support organization for the 60+ mentoring organizations to help them in scaling their activities with adoption of best practices in recruiting, training, and supporting mentoring relationships. There are mentoring partnerships in 26 states. Mentor Colorado is one of the most recent states to form an organization. The models Colorado is following are the organizations in Minnesota, Massachusetts, New York, and Pennsylvania which have dramatically increased the number of quality mentoring relationships. – dpm]

In 2015, The National Mentoring Partnership and Ernst and Young sponsored a 2015 report Mentoring at the crossroads of education, business and community about the value of mentoring to the individuals, the community, and to businesses. As the report states it, “Mentoring is changing the trajectory of thousands of young people’s lives.” 

Value to the individual and community.  Some of the benefits to the individual and the community include:

  • Better school performance.  Improved attendance,  higher graduation rates, and more likely to go on to college

  • Less Substance Abuse. Mentored youth are less likely to start using illegal drugs and alcohol.

  • Lower Crime rate. Fewer disciplinary problems and lower incidence of criminal behavior

  • Better jobs and much less likely to be dependent on entitlement programs

Value to companies.  Key reasons companies engage in youth mentoring:

  • Fostering employee engagement, satisfaction and retention. Today’s employees are strongly attracted to companies that are purpose-driven and that offer opportunities for engagement.

  • Cultivating and developing their future workforce. Prepare a more productive workforce

  • Supporting vibrant communities (which include viable customers

  • Branding
    • Improve its image in the community
    • Increase community awareness of its mission

Mentor Colorado can help your company get started.

Many organizations have a fragmented approach to not-for-profit activities. Other companies may not know how to get started. Mentor Colorado is helping sponsoring companies with the development of mentoring programs, training, and managing mentoring activities.

Become a Founding Sponsor and make a lasting difference.

To get involved:  

If you would like more information about how you and your organization can get involved (and make a positive difference), please contact Dave Mead or Executive Director, Brad Strong.


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