Teen Mentoring Toolkit
Tools for planning, implementing and evaluating a quality school or community-based teen mentoring Initiative
Matching should be an intentional process based on the information you have collected about your mentors and mentees through the screening and selection process. Many teen mentoring initiatives primarily use a one-to-one mentoring model where one mentor is matched with one mentee.
An important benefit of one-to-one mentoring is that the mentee gains the focused, individual attention that many children/youth crave and the relationship can be truly youth-centered, because each mentor is dedicated to one mentee.
Limited information is available regarding teen mentors being matched with multiple mentees, in a group mentoring model, making it difficult
to know what the potential benefits might be. In group matches, mentors may not be able to provide as much individual attention to youth as they can in one-to-one matches. Because the quality of the relationship helps determine the extent to which youth benefit from mentoring, group mentoring may be less likely than one-to-one matches to promote positive changes in youth.
Tips for the Matching Process:
- Assess participants’ interests and preferences via interviews or surveys ahead of time and match youth with
similar strengths, experiences and interests.
- Mentees reported higher levels of closeness when matched with mentors of the same gender.
- Pairing students who already know each other may be effective if their prior experiences have been positive.
- Use a matching process in which a group of mentors and potential mentees interact through activities and discussions, and then decide on matches using your observations and input from the mentors and mentees. After a group interaction such as this, some programs will ask mentees, “which mentor do you remember?” rather than asking which mentor they liked best, to avoid a popularity contest.
“We acknowledge that we are on and support Mentoring for Youth in the traditional territories across Alberta of the many First Nations from Treaty 6,7,& 8, the Métis of the 8 Alberta Settlements, and Inuit people whose footsteps have marked these lands for centuries.”