Mentoring Programs

There are a number of Mentoring Programs available in the State of Texas:

1. One Beloved Community Mentoring Program (1BC)

This youth development program's name and mission stems from one of Martin Luther King's ideas about the beloved community. Both children and adolescents, from the ages of 5 to 19 take part in this unique mentoring program that uses group and peer to peer mentoring in order to make a difference in the lives of many children.

An adult mentor leads a group of 5-8 children while other adults are added to the group as availability allows. This ensures that the program can help as many children possible, and adult mentors are often able to recruit more mentors to help out with group activities, increasing the number of positive, caring individuals that the children have access to on a weekly basis. Group mentoring also allows for children to learn and develop social skills with their peers and learn to work together on projects. This also helps to overcome socioeconomic barriers as children from different backgrounds and neighborhoods are put together in non-homogeneous groups.

The goal of 1BC is for mentors and mentees to remain together as a functional group until the students graduate from high school. Success of the program is defined by seeing the students graduate from high school and go on to enroll in college. A shorter term definition includes improved behavior and grades and overall positive changes in the child. Success is monitored by parent and teacher surveys as well as report card grades.

See http://auyd.org/ for further information.

2. Women's Business Council-Southwest (WBCS)

Serving female business owners in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, this group strongly believes that mentoring is necessary to achieve success in business. Taking part in mentoring gives these entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn from those who have years of experience behind them as well as various perspectives pertaining to business and the industry in which they work.

Mentoring also allows these businesswomen to network and build relationships with other like minded individuals. Mentoring also allows successful individuals, who may have received mentoring, the chance to give back to the community.

In the WBCS Mentor Initiative, the mentees receive mentoring from a mentor for a specific need over a flexible amount of time. Mentees must do their fair share of work in the partnership by identifying their business needs, making business plans, goals and creating financial reports. In order to receive mentoring, one must be a WBCS member in good standing and able to commit their time and the resources needed in order to make the mentorship successful.

See http://www.wbcsouthwest.org/ for further information.

3. Texas Beginning Educator Support System (TxBESS)

Facing a shortage of teachers in the coming years, this mentoring program was developed to help new teachers during their early years on the job in order to increase the retention rate and help beginning teachers develop professionally. Utilizing feedback from past participants of the TxBESS program, a strong support team and ongoing training the organization is working to help and encourage teachers in more than 20 Texas communities with more being added as funding allows. Early-career teachers who participate in such mentoring, especially when partnered with a mentor teacher, administrator and representative from an education preparation program are more likely to spend more years in the classroom as well as devote more time to their own professional development.

4. Sure B.E.T (Businesses and Education Together)

This multi-faceted organization offers Texas youth a variety of programs that are specifically designed to increase student success, both in and out of the classroom, prepare for college and their eventual transition into the workforce. Students from elementary through high school can receive tutoring and mentoring from a caring adult in order to enhance their self-esteem, achieve their goals, build healthy relationships and stay improve their academic performance. Even with half an hour of mentoring each week, students who participate in this program are thriving. Mentees have improved the passing rate on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills Test and are greatly improving their literacy skills. Most importantly, the program helps students to remain in school even though nation-wide drop out rates are on the rise.

Older students involved in Sure B.E.T. are given opportunities to explore future career options in a program called Occupation Investigations and Business Cents is a class for high school students who are interested in careers in business. Career and Job Fairs are held allowing students and business leaders to interact and learn from each other while the YOUth LEADership Conference is a way in which middle school students can develop and hone their leadership skills. See http://www.surebetvictoria.com/ for further information.