April is National Volunteer Month, and we are lucky to live in a state where individuals in our communities make volunteering part of their lives. Mentoring programs rely on the desire of individuals to be mentors, to give their time to help others. Recent national research shows that one in three young people in America (and in Vermont) will grow up without a formal or natural mentor in their lives. That means that one in three youth have no adult to turn to for support outside of their immediate family. With this great need for more mentors we can’t rely solely on individuals stepping up to volunteer as mentors, we need to find a way to engage the community in a broader way.
Mobius has been working with a Leadership Champlain group to work on ways to better engage local businesses and help them see the value of encouraging their employees to become mentors. MENTOR, The National Mentoring Partnership, recently released a study with EY examining how and why companies should become engaged in youth mentoring. To learn more about the report visit MENTOR’s website. There are great businesses in Vermont and we hope in the coming years to work with many of them to encourage them to incorporate youth mentoring into their work place. Whether it be partnering with a local school to start their own mentoring program or just providing an hour a week of paid time off for employees to mentor, local businesses can play a large role in helping us close the Vermont mentoring gap.
If you work for a business that would be interested in exploring how to get more involved in youth mentoring, please reach out to us!
Reward Volunteers 6.0 Has Launched
Cabot Creamery Cooperative
recently launched "Reward Volunteers 6.0
," the sixth version of its initiative that rewards volunteers and their organizations for the time they spend giving back to their communities. The initiative is now web-based, which allows users the ability to log their time from any smartphone, computer or tablet. The program also allows users to report their activity on behalf of an employer. Since the program was launched in February of 2012, more than 200,000 volunteer hours have been logged, with over 72,000 hours logged in just this last year alone. If you want to help spread the news use #RewardVolunteers
on all your social media platforms.
We continue to encourage Vermont mentoring programs that use the Vermont Mentoring Database
to have their mentors log their volunteer hours through the database. Volunteer mentors who log their hours through the database will automatically be entered into the Reward Volunteers system. Mentoring programs that do not use the Vermont Mentoring Database to track volunteer hours can still participate by going through the new Reward Volunteers website
. We also encourage programs to invite their advisory groups into the program! You can learn more about the release of Reward Volunteers 6.0 by watching Cabot’s Nate Formalarie and Mobius Executive Director Chad Butt, on WCAX’s featured story
on the :30.
Think College Vermont at UVM Aids Students with Disabilities
Think College Vermont at the University of Vermont (UVM)
is an innovative, inclusive, academic, social, and vocational program for UVM students with developmental and intellectual disabilities seeking a college experience and career path. Participants earn a 12-credit Certificate of College Studies designed to include: academic enrichment, social and recreational skills, independent living and self-advocacy skills, as well as work experience and career skills. Graduates of the program have moved on to careers in the field of human services, education, health care, or the pursuit of graduate degrees. Think College Vermont incorporates student-centered planning, academic advising, and peer mentors for an inclusive, supportive college experience.
The Think College Mentor program
has become the heart and soul of our student and program success. Mentors are UVM students of similar age and help Think College students navigate the academic, social and cultural aspects of college life. One mentor commented, “This stands as one of the best decisions I have made for myself as a college student. Working with Think College students was my favorite thing to do. I decided that I would like to spend the rest of my life working with folks with disabilities.” To date, 50 students have served as UVM mentors in the program. The program currently has 15 UVM mentors.
Join Clifford the Big Red Dog to Support SB Mentoring
Clifford the Big Red Dog is coming to Barnes & Noble in South Burlington to support SB Mentoring and its Spring Bookfair! The bookfair will be all day, but young Vermonters, mentees and their mentors, and families alike can join Clifford at 7:00pm for storytime, crafts and tons of fun. Make sure to pick a book to bring home with you to support your local mentoring program!
When: Friday, May 15th | Bookfair (9:00am-10:00pm) Storytime (7:00pm)
Where: Barnes & Noble | 102 Dorset Street | South Burlington, VT
Registration Information: Free. Call (802) 864-8001 with further questions.
You Are Invited: the Mercy Connection's Annual May Luncheon
Mercy Connection’s Annual May Luncheon is a signature event that brings more than 400 community members together to enjoy one another’s stories, celebrate program successes and share in the positive impact Mercy Connection’s work has on the community. The luncheon highlights the program’s participants and the steps each individual is taking toward self-sufficiency and a future of hope. Every year, the Board of Directors honors one recipient with the distinguished Catherine McAuley Award. The 2015 award will be presented to Roddy Cleary.
When: Thursday, May 7th | 11:00am-1:30pm
Where: Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center | 870 Williston Road | S. Burlington, VT
Registration Information: $50/individual. Purchase tickets here.
Connecting Youth Mentoring Celebrates at the EDGE
On April 2nd, the Sports and Fitness EDGE of Williston generously hosted Connecting Youth (CY) Mentoring pairs from the Williston Central School (WCS) for a day enjoying team building activities in the EDGE's field house and pool. Every single one of the 56 CY/WCS mentees was in attendance for this day of getting to know, enjoy, and learn from each other. 50 CY mentors (including 20 members of the WCS staff) joined mentees in activities that pulled each pair together and were fun for a wide range of ages and abilities, including: three-legged races, a human scavenger hunt, Colony Ball, swimming, and bead making with Bead Crazy. Numerous community and business partners donated time, food, and prizes for mentees. The benefits of this day were priceless; it enhanced mentees’ pride to be a part of CY Mentoring, strengthened the bonds between and among our pairs, and built continuity in the program for both kids and adults.
BBBS of Windham County's 34th Annual Bowl for Kids' Sake
On April 4th, Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) of Windham County had yet another successful Bowl for Kid’s Sake (BFKS) this year at Brattleboro Bowl. There were a total of 74 teams at the event, 17 of which were mentors and mentees who came together to form teams. The mentoring program reached its $55,000 goal! Mentor Bill Penniman raised the most individually. Long time BFKS participant Linda Thurber raised the second-most individually. Mentor and BBBS Advisory Committee Member, Dave Twombly raised the third-most individually. The top fundraising team was a long-time participating team: the Windham Southwest Supervisory Union (WSWSU) Teacher's Association, captained by David Kolkebeck. It was a great day for all who came out and young Vermonters even got to enjoy a special visit from the Easter Bunny!
Mayors' Day of Recognition for National Service
On April 7th, Winooski Mayor Seth Leonard and Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger came together to show their support of the AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs. Beyond the recognition, this was a day where AmeriCorps members could come together and talk with others in the field about the various types of services being done around the state. Ben McShane, Vermont Youth Tomorrow AmeriCorps VISTA (VYT A*VISTA) serving with Parks and Recreation for the City of Winooski, proudly states, "It was eye-opening, rewarding, and fun to get to meet so many engaged, excited, and enthusiastic people. Our bond wasn’t defined by our age or even our nice matching AmeriCorps vests, but rather, our passion to see a difference being made in a community we all truly enjoyed being a part of. I believe both Mayor Leonard and Mayor Weinberger recognized this passion that we shared and took the time to shine a light on it. We were a team; a team committed to serving in various ways to make a difference."
Community Night for Mentoring at Bluebird Barbeque
On April 15th, at the Community Night for Mentoring, Mobius’ awesome supporters helped raise $300 for mentoring in Vermont. Food enthusiasts and mentoring supporters came out to the local restaurant to enjoy some of the best barbeque around. Throughout the night, Mobius was able to have some great conversations with potential mentors, sponsors, and community supporters.
Mobius is so grateful to Bluebird Barbeque for hosting another great awareness and fundraiser effort. Keep a lookout for other great Community Nights hosted by community-focused, neighborhood-friendly restaurants.
Journey Mentoring's Big Announcement and Senior Hurrah
On April 16th, the 3rd Annual Senior Hurrah raised nearly $6,000 for Journey Mentoring! The event celebrated local high school seniors in a basketball game against Journey Mentoring’s Director, Jeff Fuller, and his team of All-Stars. Former UVM Catamount captain, Luke Apfeld, was joined by Captain Richard Phillips and former Vermont Frost Heave and Spaulding High School's own legend, David Ball. The All-Stars put on a show stolen by Williamstown High School senior, Dani Jesmonth, who scored 20 points, including a clutch "3" which forced overtime. Bobby Shedd, Lamoille Union High School/Johnson State College, led the All-Stars to victory in the extra time. Catch the recap videos of the game on CVTSport.net and WCAX.com.
At the Senior Hurrah, Life Bridge Mentoring-Central Vermont announced its new venture as Journey Mentoring. Journey Mentoring continues making time to build mentoring relationships into trusted friendship. Jeff remarks, “I’m filled with great anticipation and expectation for this new chapter mentoring in central Vermont. All of the support and guidance by Lifebridge, Inc. has brought us to this point of launching independently from them. I am filled with gratitude for all that has been invested to make this opportunity a reality. I thank Lifebridge, Inc., for the past five years! We are the same faith-based, community-based one-to-one 5th-12th grade student mentoring program in central Vermont; collaborating, networking and partnering with the Barre Supervisory Union and Orange North Supervisory Union.”
BBBS of Bennington County's 28th Annual Bowl for Kids' Sake
On April 25th, the community came out in strong support of Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) of Bennington County by raising $41,527 at the 28th Annual Bowl for Kids’ Sake event! The bowl-a-thon fundraiser is the mentoring program’s primary funding source and the amount fundraised exceeded last year’s total by over $1,000. The growing donation aligns with BBBS of Bennington, which has grown to support over 60 matches in the past year.
“The event was extremely exciting this year and The Bank of Bennington was proud to serve as Title Sponsor,” said Annick Billert, Assistant Vice President for The Bank of Bennington. “The energy of everyone who participates is just incredible and something great to experience.” The Spiral Press Café, Carbone Automotive Group, Sovernet Communications and Bennington Subaru all served as Patron Sponsors. Bennington Lanes hosted the event. In addition, a significant number of local businesses supported Bowl for Kids’ Sake with sponsorships and donated items.
Chittenden County Mentoring Network Meeting
The Chittenden County Mentoring Network (CCMN) welcomes all mentoring programs to attend the monthly meetings to network, brainstorm and learn from fellow mentoring programs. The CCMN is a group of mentoring program staff–community and school-based–who meet monthly to offer one another support, encouragement, ideas, and networking to further individual programs’ good work. Currently the group is comprised of programs from northwestern Vermont but any mentoring program is welcome to join the group. Meetings are held on the second Thursday of each month, from 12:00-2:00pm.
Howard Center's Community Friends Mentoring
1138 Pine Street | Burlington, VT
Thursday, May 14th
Planning on attending? E-mail the CCMN group (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Live Mentor Webinar: Including and Welcoming LGBTQ Youth
What: A free webinar on
"Including and Welcoming LGBTQ Youth in Mentoring Programs"
Hosted by: The Collaborative Mentoring Webinar Series, a partnership of MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and a planning team comprised of state mentoring partnerships and other national partners.
When: Thursday, May 21st | 1:00-2:15pm
Register Information: FREE. Register Here.
"Many adults working in the field of positive youth development take for granted the fact that youth cannot succeed to their full potential in unsafe environments. The staff of youth programs therefore strive to create an environment that supports the unique needs of each individual child. Some youth, however, have invisible needs. LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning) youth are often a hidden population - individuals in this community must choose to disclose their identities for them to be known. Regardless of a youth's sexual orientation or gender identity; whether it is perceived or actual, disclosed or undisclosed; creating a more inclusive program environment helps to support and ensure the safety of all youth. Learn how to create safe environments and meet the mentoring needs of LGBTQ youth and mentors through this webinar."
FREE Trainings with Prevent Child Abuse Vermont for 2015
Prevent Child Abuse Vermont (PCAV) is now offering free trainings to support providers, staff, and parents in preventing sexual abuse from occurring. For more information, contact PCAV here or at 802-229-5724. Check out PCAV training opportunities here.
View and Share The Mentoring Public Service Announcement
Did you know that 1 in 3 young Vermonters will grow up without a formal or natural mentor? That means 32,500 youth in Vermont do not have any adult they can turn to for support beyond their immediate family. Northbranch Media and Mobius worked together to create a 30-second video to help spread awareness and recruit new mentors for young Vermonters! Share the video with your friends, followers, family and anyone you think would make a good mentor.
Mobius Mentor Discount Card
Community-based Vermont mentors and mentees are now able to enjoy unique discounts from supportive local businesses all across the state. When a mentor makes a reservation or purchase at participating venues, he or she can present the Mobius Mentor Discount Card and receive a discount at that location. The initiative allows mentors to take their mentees to restaurants, theaters, museums, pools, and a variety of other fun places at a discounted price. For the full list of the more than 40 businesses that are participating in the program, visit the discount card web page.
Know a business that may want to join?
Fill out this form.
Are you a Vermont business that would like to join?
E-mail email@example.com or
call (802) 658-1888.
National Mentoring Resource Center
The National Mentoring Resource Center is a resource for no-cost, specialized, local program assistance. The program assistance you apply for will be provided by local, experienced mentoring coordinators and experts in the field. Mobius looks forward to working with programs across the state to utilize this great opportunity. Please, feel free to ask us any questions that will help you make use of this free resource.
Mentoring programs can apply here.
1) Requests for assistance should be for aspects to help your mentoring program be in better alignment with the national standards for quality-based mentoring, The Elements of Effective Practice for Mentoring™ and the Vermont Core Standards for Mentoring.
2) Requests may be to help your program reach core standards, but also for enhancements of your program that go beyond required best practices.
The Chronicle of Evidence-Based Mentoring Newsletter
“The Chronicle is an online source for sharing new findings and ideas about youth mentoring. The goal of the Chronicle is to encourage active dialogue around evidence-based practice in youth mentoring in ways that improve the practice of youth mentoring.” Mentoring programs, this is a great resource that includes: The Research Corner blog, an edited forum, new mentoring research, research from related fields, Q&A’s with researchers, and expert perspectives from the field’s leading researchers and practitioners. Start getting involved by subscribing to the Chronicle newsletter or by visiting the Chronicle site.
|Mobius, Vermont's Mentoring Partnership
20 Winooski Falls Way #105
Winooski, VT 05404