Established in 1986, the Norwalk Mentor Program, a program of the Human Services Council in partnership with the Norwalk Public Schools, was the first school-based mentoring program in the country. The Program’s original premise remains constant today — matching students with positive adult role models can make a significant difference in the lives of those students served.
The Norwalk Mentor Program coordinates a structured one-on-one relationship between a student and adult volunteer. This unique approach provides participants in grades K-12 with an adult who can meet them for approximately one hour per week during the school year and engage in academic and/or social activities conducive to the school setting. By sharing fun activities and exposing youth to new experiences, a mentor encourages positive choices, promotes high self-esteem, supports academic achievement and introduces the mentee to new ideas. Mentors act as friends and role models and spend each week having fun with their mentees — playing catch, reading a book, shooting some hoops, creating an arts and crafts project, or just talking.
Simply put: mentoring works. Studies have shown that children who are involved in a mentoring program experience higher levels of academic success, better peer and family relationships and are less likely to use drugs, alcohol and/or engage in other dangerous behaviors. If you are interested in becoming a mentor please contact Nancy Pratt at (203) 849-1111 or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you know of a Norwalk Public School student who would benefit from the Norwalk Mentor Program, please contact the school liaison at the student’s school via this listing School-Liaisons-Contact-2016-17.
The Norwalk Mentor Program is committed to meeting quality standards for mentoring that are safe and effective. We strive to follow the nationally recognized best practices, known as the Elements of Effective Practice for Mentoring™ and established by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership, to support quality youth mentoring relationships. To achieve these standards, [YOUR PROGRAM NAME] is a member of the National Quality Mentoring System and has completed a quality assessment and improvement process facilitated by The Connecticut Mentoring Partnership.
Who is a Mentor?
- A volunteer who lives or works in the greater Norwalk area
- Age 18 and over
- Must be open-minded and good listeners
Benefits to Mentors
- Increase personal satisfaction
- Experience greater self-worth
- Exposure to cultural diversity
- Improve image of employer in the community
Impact on Youth
- Improve student’s self-esteem, self-confidence, community skills and motivation
- Improve attitudes towards their parents, peers and teachers
- Improve student’s academic performance and attendance
- Improve student’s perception of one’s own ability
We had many successes over the past school year! Take a look at the two links below:
The Norwalk Mentor Program is 29 years strong, and counting. Over the past school year alone, we had 252 mentor/mentee matches, provided nearly 10,000 hours of mentoring, and saw all 13 of our senior mentees graduate from high school with plans further their education. And, we’re proud of the longevity of our mentoring relationships: 88% of our mentors returned from the previous year.