VCU's Virginia Mentoring Partnership Assists Regional Youth Development Efforts
Virginia Mentoring Partnership, a program within VCU’s Division of Community Engagement, has partnered with the Corporation for National and Community Service to place recent graduates serving as AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members in youth development organizations across the region.
The collaboration has resulted in six volunteers, including two VCU alumni, being assigned to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Richmond & Tri-Cities, Computers4Kids in Charlottesville, St. Joseph’s Villa, a University of Richmond program in the Highland Park and Richmond North Side areas and VCU’s Carver Promise program.
Within these organizations, the volunteers will build organizational capacity and enhance youth outcomes by recruiting volunteers, supporting mentoring matches, engaging public awareness opportunities and coordinating various community activities.
“This program expands the capacity for mentoring programs by providing them with resources and human capital and has enhanced mentoring and tutoring initiatives within VCU’s Division of Community Engagement,” said Virginia Mentoring Partnership Program Director Rebekah Holbrook.
The Virginia Mentoring Partnership VISTA Mentoring Program continues a long-term commitment to quality mentoring in the central Virginia region. VISTA Mentor Coordinator Milan Powell, a VCU alumnus, said VCU students have a long tradition of mentoring children in the community and cited the success of the Carver Promise Program as an example of such commitment.
“VCU students make up over a third of the hundreds of mentors that are assembled to spend at least one hour per week with students at Carver Elementary,” Powell said.
The new effort was announced as both groups celebrate National Mentoring Month, which takes place this month, and “Thank Your Mentor Day” on Jan. 17.
A training session will be held for those interested in becoming mentors on Tuesday, Jan. 29, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Virginia Mentoring Partnership Office on the third floor of the Science Museum of Virginia, 2500 W. Broad St. in Richmond. Additional details may be found here.
The Virginia Mentoring Partnership provides training and technical assistance to mentors and mentoring programs to increase the quality and quantity of mentoring for Virginia's youth. AmeriCorps VISTA is the national service program designed specifically to fight poverty. For more information, visit www.vamentoring.org.
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