Mentoring

Our mentoring programs give young people the opportunity to build positive relationships with caring and supportive volunteer mentors from the community. All our programs encourage young people to develop important life skills, increase their resilience, make connections with their community and set goals for the future. 

As a result of the friendship, guidance and support offered by mentors, young people participating in our programs are more likely to:

  • Develop their relationship and communication skills

  • Experience stronger connections to their communities

  • Increase their self-esteem and confidence

  • Make positive choices and take steps towards a better future

Berry Street works with a range of partners in delivering mentoring programs, including:

  • Schools/education and training providers

  • Local Government and community agencies

  • Department of Human Services

  • Victorian Police

  • VicRoads

  • White Lion

We need Mentors 

Anyone can be a mentor – volunteers do not need any special skills or knowledge as we provide free training – but we do ask that they are:

  • Community minded

  • Non-judgmental

  • Caring and respectful of young people

  • Trustworthy and reliable

  • Willing to have fun and offer friendship to a young person

  • Able to spend two hours a week with a young person for anywhere from twelve weeks to two years depending on the program

Case study

Katie Gallop has been a Leaving Care mentor for the past two and a half years and has been matched with a young person for most of this time. 

When asked what her initial attraction to mentoring was, Katie said she “wanted to help a young person outside of the work environment and had considered doing so for quite a while.”

Katie mentioned that “the young person and her catch up as much as possible, but sometimes this is difficult due to issues facing the young person.”

“When we do catch up, we go out for coffee, a chat, go for drives, and we also do practical things such as going to the Salvation Army, grocery shopping and I even assist the young person to pick up catalogues for her employment.”

Katie believes the main benefit of mentoring is “you get to hang out with a cool kid and give back to the community.”  She feels that it broadens her horizons and allows her to see what other services are out there. Katie stated “it’s a mutual exchange where we learn from each other and participate in positive activities.”

Katie and the young person have a really good relationship that is respectful and has developed over the years. Katie has seen her grow up and become strong enough to make significant decisions that will impact positively on her life. 

These decisions have strengthened the relationship to the extent that Katie admires the young woman and believes she is an “absolute inspiration.” 

When asked what advice she would give to potential mentors, she said “Do it! It’s not all good times, but there are good times. You need to be understanding and flexible”. 

 
Interested in Mentoring?
 
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