This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
, with the assistance of the Honorable Robert T. Russell and Jack O’Connor. Questions regarding the Mentoring Program Guide should be directed to Rachelle SoltPhillips via email: email@example.com For information regarding the Veterans Court or the court mentor program, please contact Jack O’Connor at (716) 858-7435. For information on the Police Mental Health Coordination Project, contact David Mann at firstname.lastname@example.org
Mission and Vision Mission A mission statement is a statement of the scope and purpose of a program or organization. A mission statement defines the core activities of the program. A mission statement is the solidification of the far off goal of a program or organization. A mission statement also serves are a point of pride for all program staff and volunteers. Ideas: To support the veteran through their readjustment to civilian life. To assist the veteran navigate through the court, treatment, and VA systems. To act as an ally during a time of vulnerability. Vision A vision statement is an imaginative representation of what the program or organization wants to be. A vision statement is a bold statement about the strength and dedication of a program or organization. A vision statement is intended to inspire and generate enthusiasm within program staff, volunteers, and leadership. Ideas: No one is left behind. Developing a Mission and Vision Both the mission and vision statements should be generated by a group of stakeholders; leadership, staff, and volunteers, in order to obtain a mission and vision that can be supported by all levels of a program or organization. Visioning exercises can be used to assist participants to develop a mental picture of where they see the organization or program in five or ten years. These mental pictures can be used to develop both the vision and mission for an organization or program. Both statements should be made in positive terms, in the present tense, concrete and specific, and concise. Additionally the statements should not be confined; the sky is the limit. Please take the time either alone or in small groups to generate a picture of what you would like the mentoring program to look like in 5 years. (1-2 pages) What will the program be doing? How will those activities be happening? What would you like to see? How would mentors in the program act? What is their role? How do they feel about the work they do? Goals and Objectives The goal of the mentoring program is to offer emotional and practical support to veterans that have entered the criminal justice system, through listening, teaching, and advocating. Mentors act as coaches, facilitators, advisors, sponsors, and supports for veterans in the program in order to assist in the successful completion of the diversionary program. The objectives of the mentoring program are that identified veterans will meet with a mentor after every court appearance, veterans will feel supported by the mentoring program, and veterans will successfully complete the court diversion program.
Design and Structure Mentoring consists of one-on-one meeting between a mentor and a veteran involved in the court system. This contact usually occurs after the veteran is seen in court. This contact is typically short, less then 30 minutes, but could be extended depending on the needs of the veteran. Mentoring sessions usually consist of questions related to the wellbeing of the veteran, any needs identified by the veteran or the courts, and any work that is being done by the veteran, the mentor, or the court to satisfy the identified needs of the veteran. Selecting a Coordinator It is important for the individual selected to the committed to mentoring as a program and that the individual views mentoring as an important aspect of the court diversion process. It is important for the individual to have good organizational and project management skills as s/he will be responsible for organizing recruitment, retention, training, scheduling, and supervision of the mentors. Finally it is important for the individual to have energy and enthusiasm for the program allowing them to inspire the mentors and potential mentors to participate in the program. Job Description
Main Function: The role of the Mentor Coordinator is to recruit, train, supervise, and coordinate mentors within the Veteran’s Court Diversion Program. The Mentor Coordinator will be responsible for recruiting potential mentors, screening candidates, and selecting individuals to become Veteran Mentors. The Mentor Coordinator will be responsible for training selected candidates in skills to facilitate a mentoring session and skills specific to the Veteran’s Court Diversion Program. The Mentor Coordinator will also be responsible for individual and group supervision as well as scheduling mentors to be present during the Veteran’s Court proceedings. Duties and Responsibilities: 1. Recruit and train volunteer Veteran’s Court mentors. 2. Assist in the retention of volunteer mentors. 3. Organize and conduct training for volunteer mentors. 4. Update and revise all training materials. 5. Provide in-service training to staff on current training issues. 6. Maintain volunteer records. 7. Assist in supervision of mentors. 8. Participate individual and group supervision for mentors. 9. Prepare written assessments of training and volunteer supervision. 10. Assist in the development of specialized training projects for the program.
11. Perform all other duties as assigned by direct supervisor. Qualifications: The position requires a Bachelor’s Degree in a human service field plus one year experience, preferably working with veterans or within the court system. It is preferable that individuals applying for this position are veterans themselves in order to better understand the concerns of the veterans in the court diversion program and the veterans who are serving as mentors. * This is a part-time position. Recruiting Mentors Recruiting mentors can be accomplished in a number of ways. Informational sessions can be held where interested individuals can attend. Individuals can also meet with the coordinator oneon-one. Flyers can be posted on bulletin boards in locations where potential mentors may see them about dates for informational sessions or who to contact if s/he is interested in participating. Short announcements can also be made at meetings and events where potential mentors may be present. What are some locations where potential mentors could be located? Information for Potential Mentors It will be important for potential mentors to be well informed about the program, their role, and what supports will be in place to help them fulfill that role. • Prior to an individual agreeing to become a mentor, potential mentors should be informed of the mission, vision, objectives, and structure of the program. This will give each individual a clear understanding of the importance of the program with the hope that it will match with his/her own values and goals. Potential mentors should also be informed of their role in the program. This includes what is expected of them, the time commitment that will be required, the training that will be offered, and when the trainings will be offered. This information will assist the individuals know what is expected of them and help them decide if they are able to make the commitment. This will help reduce mentor dissatisfaction as all mentors will be provided with specific information around what is expected of them. The final information that should be shared with potential mentors is what they can expect from the program. This includes information about the frequency of individual and group supervision and incentives that can be used to help mentors feel valued and appreciated. This information will convey to the potential mentors that there will be support available to them throughout their time as a volunteer and that the program views them as important and valuable component of the Veterans Court Diversion Program.
All of this information should be incorporated into an information sheet that also includes the contact information for the coordinator and an application form to become a mentor. The information sheet is a simple way to convey information to potential mentors while also giving
them something to take away to help them consider their decision. The information session and the individual meeting with the coordinator serve two functions. The first is that information can be shared with potential mentors, but the second function is that potential mentors have the opportunity to ask questions about the program, about what will be expected of them, and what support they will have in order to accomplish their tasks. This will help the potential mentors make an informed decision about whether or not to participate in the program. Application Form A simple application form should be completed by all potential mentors. This form should include contact information for the individual and skills and experiences that s/he brings to the program that may be helpful. Additionally, the application forms should include service related information, such as branch of service and length of service. This information will assist with the screening process as well as when mentees are assigned to the mentors. Mentor Screening Not all applicants will be appropriate mentors. It will be important to determine which applicants will best fit into the mentor role within the program. Effective Mentors Effective mentors are those individuals who are committed to the mentoring program and what to be available to support other veterans. These individuals should be able to build relationships with the mentees while maintaining appropriate boundaries through the use of good communication skills, listening skills, and the ability to show empathy. All of these skills will be important to the effectiveness of the mentor/mentee relationship. Training will also be provided around these skills for all mentors, but having a solid foundation in these skills will allow mentors to further develop their skills through the trainings that are offered. Mentor Selection If the applicants are known to the coordinator, that may be enough information in order to select appropriate mentors. If the applicants are not known to the coordinator, brief interviews should be conducted in order to determine if the individual is the right fit for the mentoring program. It will be important to determine if the individual is committed to the mentoring program and has the appropriate skills in order to be a mentor. The interview also gives the applicant the opportunity to ask any final questions about the program. In the interview it will be important to discuss the following points with the applicant. It will be important to determine what the applicant views the role of the mentor to be from his/her point of view. It will also be important to cover the skills and characteristics that the applicant views as important to effective mentoring as well as the individual’s motivation for wanting to become a mentor. All of this information will be important to the effectiveness of the individual within the mentoring program. After the interviews have been completed, the coordinator will be responsible for selecting the most appropriate applicants depending on the number of mentors needed. It may be helpful to select additional mentors than the minimum necessary so that additional mentors have been trained prior to being needed.
Mentor Training The success of the mentoring program and of the mentors themselves will be determined by the training and skills of the mentors. The mentors must be confident that they have the skills and the knowledge to be effective in their role. Although the individuals selected to be mentors will have basic communication skills, it will be important continually develop the skills of the mentors. Mentor training will occur in two areas. The first is general information about how to facilitate a mentoring session, communication and listening skills. The second is more specific information about how the court system, the diversion program, and the work of the Veterans Administration (VA). Both of these areas are important to the effectiveness of the mentors, as the communication skills are needed to be able to build a relationship and share information and the specific information is needed as it will be the information that will be shared. Training for Facilitating a Mentoring Session The mentor’s role is a difficult one. The mentor must develop a relationship with the mentee in order for the program to be helpful, but at the same time the mentor must remain professional and not abuse the power that is afforded them through the mentor/mentee relationship. This balance can be accomplished through training the mentors to use interpersonal communication skills, such as building rapport, active listening, forming appropriate questions, and identifying barriers to communication. Training for Veterans Court Specific Information This training will include information about the functioning of the VA system as well as the court system. This information will be important as it will be the information shared with the mentee by the mentor. This information will be used to support and assist the veterans as they interface with the VA and the criminal justice system. Tracking Contacts It will be important for each mentor to record each contact that is made with each mentee. This information will be useful for the next mentor who comes into contact with that mentee, allowing for time to be spent more effectively. On a mentee’s first contact with the mentoring program it will be important for the mentor to explain the basics of the program to the individual and have them complete an information form with general information including name, date of birth, charges being faced, and any other information that might be helpful to the mentors. In addition a note should be written documenting what was talked about with the mentee, any concerns that were discussed, anything that needs to be worked on, and any concerns that might need followup. It will be important for each contact to be documented as a means of sharing progress and flagging any concerns that may surface. All of this information should be kept in a file that is accessible to all mentors if the need would arise. Monitoring and Supervising Supervision will make up a large portion of the responsibilities of the coordinator. There may be the need to both individual and group supervision, but group supervision will be the most effective and helpful form of supervision for the mentors overall. Supervision is important because it provides an opportunity for mentors to debrief after mentoring sessions, enables the mentors to share their experiences with one another, allows the coordinator to identify potential problems and put strategies in place to correct them, as well as
sending a clear message to the mentors that they are being supported by the both the program and each other. Group supervision will be most helpful in these areas as the mentors will be able to make connections to each other, increasing both their level of expertise and their level of support. Additionally it will be important for the mentors to be able to get in contact with the coordinator if they have any concerns or if they feel as though they need individual supervision. Appreciating and Celebrating Showing appreciation of the mentors will be important as a means of retaining the pool of mentors. The work that the mentors will be doing will be stressful and they are not compensated monetarily. It is important for the program to express to the mentor that they are important and valued by the program. This can be accomplished through something as simple as a certificate of appreciation or an appreciation lunch. Although this seems simple, it will be greatly appreciated by the mentors and will help them to stay motivated and engaged with the program.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue listening from where you left off, or restart the preview.