becoming a Mentor
Being a 'Big Brother' or 'Big Sister' is simple. All you have to do is be a friend to one of our fun-loving kids. You and your 'Little Brother' or 'Little Sister' can do things that you already enjoy doing, such as:
Being a Mentor
Mentoring sessions are a fun, relaxed time when young people and their 'Bigs' can hang out and build a friendship.The programme is structured in a way that allows mentoring to begin as early as Year 1 and can continue right through until the end of high school.
Mentoring relationships are most effective when they last a long time and when frequent contact is made.To be a mentor you need to:
- volunteer 1 – 2 hours per week
- commit to the mentoring for 12 months
- be reliable and consistent
- be willing to be supervised
- for community based and school based programmes the volunteer must be over 18.
For many young people, simply having a mentor turn up week after week is so important, as this provides a stable relationship which will help connect them to other people and to the community around them.
It is more fun than you realise and flexible enough to fit your schedule. Are you thinking about getting involved as a mentor? Or would you like more information first? Either way, it's just a few simple steps.
With over 100 years of history – Big Brothers Big Sisters is a reputable and highly professional mentoring programme. All volunteers are interviewed, screened and trained before being matched. Once matched they supported by a Mentoring Coordinator. Mentors commit to having regular accountability with the Cordinator, and will be supported by them throughout the mentoring relationship.
Follow this process to become a mentor:
- Apply – complete the written application form and return it by post or email to the Big Brothers Big Sisters office in your local area.
- Background check – child safety is our priority so we will check your records to be sure that you are a good fit for our programme.
- Referees – you need to provide us with the names of three people who we can talk to about your ability to be a mentor.
- Interview – a mentoring Coordinator will invite you to participate in an in-person interview.
- Training / Orientation – prior to being matched you will attend a mentor training session.
- Matching – we will review the young people in your area who need a Big Brother or Big Sister and find the best fit for you. Depending on your gender and the kind of young person you’d like to mentor, matching may take some time. Making the right match is important to our commitment to form lasting relationships.
Once matched, 'Bigs' start develop friendships with their 'Littles'. It’s as simple as involving them in your normal daily routine, taking them grocery shopping, washing the car or taking the dog for a walk.
School-based matches meet in schools for just one hour each week during the day. They do projects together, read in the library, eat lunch, kick a ball around, and more.
Community-based matches are flexible and will fit your busy schedule. 'Bigs' and their 'Littles' hang out in the community, go to parks & museums, sporting events, movies, and more. What you do is up to you and the young person you are matched with!
We’ll Support You
Each match is supported by professional Coordinator at your local Big Brothers Big Sisters brach. Mentoring Coordinators regularly check in with volunteers, children and parents, and are always available to answer questions.
Regular events are held in your community giving you an opportunity to meet other Mentors and 'Littles' in your area. Plus, through the generosity of our partners and individuals in your community, there are often free tickets to sporting events, shows, and more!
- Kicking a ball around
- Taking a walk on the beach
- Playing a board game
- Hanging out, eating and talking
- Going to the movies and throwing popcorn at the screen (okay, maybe not that second part).