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Friendly cheerleaders sought for youth

Media release
6 July 2005

Friendly cheerleaders sought for youth in transition

What is a mentor? A mentor can be an adviser, a counsellor, guide, tutor, teacher, guru or a friend.

If you think you fit one or more of these categories, the Waitakere Youth Transition Service would like to hear from you.

The Service is looking for adults who are prepared to train as mentors or tauira to support youth in transition.

“We are looking for positive role models in the community: volunteers who are good listeners, non judgemental who want to share their wisdom in a one to one partnership which may last for up to 18 months. But also, we want to find people who will be a friend, have fun together and work to develop their potential,” says Mentor Coordinator Caitlin Bush.

“No formal qualifications are necessary.

“People who have been mentors say the relationship with a younger person benefits them just as much as they learn a lot about tolerance. They are supported and supervised by programme staff through the mentoring relationship,” she says.

Mentors must be at 21 years, live in Waitakere and commit to six hours a month mentoring a young person for an 18-month period.

“We need people to step out of their comfort zone and give mentoring a go. We have 60 young people who have been referred to the Waitakere Youth Transition Service from local schools. These young people are considered at-risk, having disengaged from school, work or training,” says Chairperson of Waitakere City Council’s Youth and Advocacy Committee Councillor Linda Cooper.

“The mentor training focuses on bringing mentors up to speed with contemporary youth issues, goal setting, communication, resiliency, child safety and resolving conflicts,” she says.

The Waitakere Youth Transition Service is an initiative proposed by the Mayoral Taskforce that has been developed by the Ministry of Social Welfare and Waitakere City Council.


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