Core Principles of YouthBuild Mentoring

It is important that mentoring in the YouthBuild context adheres to several basic values. The mentoring services you provide should be:

  • Elective. Young people must realize the potential value of a mentoring relationship and choose to participate.
  • Youth-empowering. Match activities are largely driven by the students’ YouthBuild Life Plans, documents that students develop to help them plan for long-term success. The students determine how the mentor can be most helpful as they work to achieve their goals. Within appropriate boundaries, students are in the driver’s seat as to where the relationship goes and what they take away from the experience.
  • Aligned. The YouthBuild mentoring model is aligned with the philosophy, vision, and core values of YouthBuild—love, respect, knowledge, opportunity, leadership, and community.
  • Community-based. Reaching out to volunteers, caring adults, and potential mentors within the local community is consistent with YouthBuild’s approach to realizing a network of committed people for maximum learning and impact. YouthBuild matches also engage in service activities and other projects that strengthen their involvement in the community.
  • Integrated. The language of coaching and support and the concept of building social networks are fundamental to the activities, routines, and tasks of YouthBuild. The National Mentoring Alliance program model builds on this established culture by developing formal mentoring relationships that provide individualized support. The mentoring program does not happen in isolation, but is a fully integrated aspect of the YouthBuild program.