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NYC Administration for Children's Services: The City's child welfare agency, dedicated to protecting children and strengthening families

Best Practices

As a strategy for helping young people succeed in life, mentoring works. It helps give young people the confidence, resources and skills they need to reach their potential.

But like any youth development strategy, mentoring works best when measures are taken to ensure quality and effectiveness. When the tool of change is a close relationship, as is the case with mentoring, everyone involved should proceed with care. The risks and improvements to the young person are proportional to how long the relationship endures. The longer a relationship lasts, usually the closer the bond and the greater benefit to the youth.

MENTOR/National Mentoring Partnership brought together many of the nation's foremost authorities on mentoring and created the Elements of Effective Practice guidelines that any mentoring program can implement to offer the best mentoring possible and reflect the latest in mentoring policies, experiences and research.

Children’s Services has developed an addendum to complement MENTOR's Elements of Effective Practice with its Best Practice Guidelines for Foster Care Youth Mentoring which presents a unified “Best Practice” policy for mentoring programs specifically serving foster care youth. This document showcases what is different and unique about a mentoring program that serves youth in foster care and provides guidelines for program coordinators, mentors, mentees, parents, and case workers.

Participants Say…

"I love my mentor! I speak to her about everything and she listens and gives me the best advice. She supports me in my decisions. She makes me feel that I'm not alone."- Mentee, 19 years old

Become a Mentore

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