Parent/Guardian InformationOverviewThe Y.A.M.M. Youth Mentor Program matches youth with adults and peers in a group setting or one-on-one relationship for a year and a half. Through these relationships, as well as recreational and group activities, our matches share friendship, support, and fun. Mentors and mentees get together at least once a week. Both mentors and mentees make a commitment to spend time together throughout the year and a half. They can participate in activities that they enjoy. The mentors are not private tutors, although sometimes pairs decide to work on homework together. We plan social group activities on weekly basis that are open to all participants. We are also available at all times to answer questions, offer support and help matches work through challenges that may arise.
MatchingThe Y.A.M.M. directors matches mentors and mentees based on shared interests, personality, and, if it is important to the mentee, cultural background. Unfortunately, we are not always able to match everyone who applies. This happens for many reasons, but the most common are that we simply do not have equal numbers of mentors and mentees. If a student is not matched, please understand that it is not because he/she is "unsuitable" for the program. They will be placed on our waiting list, and as soon as an opportunity arises for them to be involved, we will contact them. If a youth is matched, their mentor will contact them by phone to let them know.
After Students Are MatchedAfter students are matched to their appropriate group, they will meet with their mentor group at least once a week for 1 hour. They will meet at the Y.A.M.M. center. Parent consent must be given for all activities matches participate in. As the mentors are volunteers, it is important that the mentee and the mentor are both respectful of the other’s time.
Group ActivitiesWe host social activities about once a month. These activities give us a chance to get together and have fun! Activities have included fundraisers, field trips, parties and activities at the center, conferences, seminars, movies, Ice- Skating, B-B-Q's, community services and more. Along with program-wide activities, our staff coordinates other events throughout the year for smaller groups of Y.A.M.M. This is to encourage a sense of community within in our program and creates a chance for our participants to get to know each other better. We really want to hear from mentees about what they would like to do.
Can my child be tutored by his or her mentor?The Youth Mentor Program is not a tutoring program. While sometimes pairs in a one-on-one relationship may decide together to work on school work, this is not a requirement for the mentors. Y.A.M.M Youth Mentor Program focuses on fostering lasting and meaningful relationships between the mentor and mentee to reduce at-risk factors which may include concentrating on academics as an at-risk factor.
What about transportation?It is the responsibility of each parent with the efforts of mentor to decide on a transportation plans that will work for the youth and family. Please be aware that most mentors in the Youth Mentor Program do not have cars. If the mentor does have a car and is willing to drive your child, you will need to fill out a waiver form. If the mentor does not have a car and you cannot help with the transportation of your child, we often come up with a solution convenient for mentee and parent(s). There is also a parent carpool list that parents can be placed on if they are interested in coordinating carpools to events with other parents whose children are in the program. Please contact us if you would like to be added and receive a copy of this roster.
Who are the mentors and why do they want to be a part of the program?Mentors are Forsyth County residents, Guilford County residents, university students and high school from a variety of different backgrounds. They have been interviewed, trained, had their references checked, and carefully matched with youth. Mentors have a variety of motivations for getting involved with the program. However, all mentors want to be a positive role model in a child’s life.
When will my child meet with their mentor group? What kinds of activities will they do together?Group meetings will be at a day and time convenient to you, your child, and the mentor group. There will be scheduled activity for the meetings. Mentors will let child know of next meeting. Activities range from going to the library, to visiting college campus, to seeing movies, or going on trips. All activities are agreed upon by staff and mentor group leader.
The only events that are pre-arranged are monthly events that we hold at a location that will be announced in advance or when determined. These events typically take place on Friday and Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons. You will be informed of these events by your child’s mentor group leader, as well as by email that we will send out the one month prior to the event.
What should I do if my child cannot attend a meeting or event with their mentor group?Be sure to keep the phone numbers of the mentor group leader handy so that you or your child can call them when needed. If you cannot reach the mentor, please call the Y.A.M.M. at (336) 705-6322 and leave a message with the Youth Mentor Program.
What if family plans conflict with a meeting?The mentor group will compliment or add to family opportunities. Time with the mentor group is not intended to displace time with the family. You should continue your normal family plans. The mentor and your child should plan their time together around your family’s normal schedule as much as possible. It may help to let your child and their mentor know about planned family events in advance to help avoid conflicts.
Can other family members or I go with my child and the mentor group or mentor?A mentoring relationship is special in part because it is a group and a one-on-one relationship. Even youth that feel very close to their parents sometimes need to talk with friends outside of the family. The mentor is an adult friend with whom your child can talk about things that concern him or her. Please respect their private time together. Moreover, mentors are not baby-sitters and cannot be responsible for anyone except their mentee.
The mentor group leader and your child will inform you about group plans each week. If at any time, you are uncomfortable with the group plans, please let us know. Mentors will be sensitive to your parental concerns and will try to find an arrangement that is acceptable to you.
How can I be sure that the mentor will support my rules and regulations?In the beginning, talk to the mentor about any rules or regulations that you expect to arise in the group or his or her relationship with your child. If you have strict rules about curfew, activities in which your child may not participate, etc. then please discuss these with the mentor group leader. By making this information known at the beginning, you can help avoid misunderstandings later.
What if the mentor says things with which I do not agree?No matter how carefully we match mentors and mentees, you may find that some areas of your beliefs and ideas differ with those of the mentor’s. If there are important issues to you, please let the mentor know. You can request that the mentor NOT question your most important beliefs or values when with your child.
Who will pay for activities of the mentor and my child?Mentors and mentees always pay for their own expenses. If there is a cost for an activity, then you or your child will be responsible for the youth’s fair share. Monthly events by Y.A.M.M. are cost-free to youth; we also provide the mentor groups with many low-cost or no-cost activity suggestions. As with any friend, mentors may treat your child occasionally, but it should not be expected on a regular basis.
How often should I be in contact with the mentor and how much should I say about family problems/ concerns?Get to know the mentor or mentor group leader well enough to feel comfortable with him or her being with you child. Before each meeting, discuss the plans and times for returning home. Try talking directly to the mentor about your concerns, but please avoid talking to the mentor about your child in front of your child. If there is something the mentor should really know, then call them when your child is not around.
What if there are concerns or questions I don’t want to discuss with the mentor?Please feel free to contact Kamm Galloway by phone at (336) 485-6566 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. They are here to make the Y.A.M.M. Mentor Program work for youth, mentors, and parents. A Y.A.M.M. staff member will call you several times during the school year to see how things are going. But don’t wait for them to call! We would like to know about anything that concerns you as soon as possible.