The Carer Support Program is part of the Child and Carer Connection Hub for the Department of Communities in Western Australia. The Carer Support Program has 2 components: long term mentoring and respite foster carers who support full-time foster carers by giving them a break. Referrals to the Carer Support Program for young people can only be made by officers within the Department. The Mentoring Program aims to provide young people in care with a friend and positive role model so they have the opportunity to develop an affirming relationship in which they feel supported. All of the young people referred to our program have suffered abuse and consequently it may take a little longer for them to build trust and form bonds. However, the journey is worthwhile – making a difference in the lives of these young people is especially rewarding. Mentors are well-prepared for their role with appropriate training and regular supervision. Mentors are also given regular support which occurs on a one to one basis both on the telephone and face to face and via email. We also facilitate mentor social gatherings to provide opportunity for networking, discussion of common issues and to build moral. Some key areas we hope mentors can assist our young people with are; identifying and reaching for potential, forming a consistent and supportive relationship, building confidence, resilience, forming positive attachments and other life skills that will assist them in adulthood. This is a voluntary role with no salary (all expenses i.e. petrol, activities are reimbursed). Mentors and young people are matched based on a range of factors which includes personal interests, personality types and location. We do emphasise the need for a minimum 12 months commitment to this role with view for longer relationships if the outcomes suit all involved.ood.
Mentor Program (Department for Communities; Child Protection and Family Support)
Program Type: One to One
Contact Person: Mark Abbott
Position: Program Coordinator Volunteer Mentoring
Phone: 08 9286 5200
Mobile: 0419 938 967
Street Address: Head Office, 189 Royal St, East Perth
Postal Address: Head Office, 189 Royal St, East Perth
Mentor Age: 20-99
Mentee Age: 10 -17
Child Protection Policy: Yes
Mentor Training: Yes, training is provided for mentors
Training Process of Mentors An initial interview and 2 training sessions are essential, along with further training through direct regular supervision and additional training opportunities relevant to your role as they present.
Mentor Screening: Yes, screening is provided for mentors
Screening Process of Mentors: Potential mentors would be subject to the Department for Child Protections screening processes which includes Police and working with children checks. Potential mentors contributions during training would also be used to assess them for suitability.
Mentor Position Description: Once matched with a young person, the mentor would be responsible to provide consistent contact on an ongoing basis, aimed at fortnightly contact for around 2-3 hours. This includes talking with the young person about any issues they have in their life and providing suitable advice and direction while developing a meaningful relationship.
Mentor Minimum Commitment: We request mentors commit for minimum of 12 months. After this period the 'match' is reviewed and in collaboration with the mentor, young person and relevant others, a decision made to extend or cease. Young people involved in the program are made aware that mentoring is for a 12 month period initially and will be reviewed on an ongoing basis for potential extension of this time frame dependant on the relationship and individuals involved.