Every child who needs a mentor
                           should have a mentor.

Don Cowles with his mentee

Mieko Timmons (third from right) with fellow board members

Nannette Bailey at VMP's 2015 Awards Luncheon

Upcoming Trainings
Summer is the perfect time to start planning for this training season. As mentoring programs prepare for the academic year, make sure your mentors are well-trained and prepared for their relationships. VMP's New Mentor Training covers relationship building, communication techniques, boundary setting, and positive youth development.

Trainings open to the general public will be held:
  • July 20th, 5:30-8pm
  • August 23rd, 5:30-8pm
  • August 30th, 5:30-8pm
Click here to view our full 2016 calendar.  Want to schedule a private, on-site training for your program? Fill out a request form here.

Get Involved by Becoming a Mentor

Are you thinking about becoming a mentor? Not sure where to begin?  Let VMP assist you in this process and connect you to a program that matches your skills and interest. Currently, many programs around the state are recruiting for the fall. Use Mentoring Connector to browse programs in your area, and give us a call to find a program that is right for you. 

Link to Learning

Research indicates that youth in mentoring relationships are more likely to hold leadership roles and engage with volunteerism in their communities. In today's world, social activism presents a vital opportunity for young people to lend their voices and lead a change. How can mentors help them do this? Check out this research from Dr. Bernadette Sanchez. See more from the Chronicle of Evidence-Based Mentoring here

Support VMP's Fall Campaign
All Hands In
From  July 25 to September 1 , the board, staff and ambassadors of VMP are raising funds through an online campaign to kick off the back to school season and be prepared to train 2000 new mentors in the 2016-17 school year.

$25 + A Caring Adult Trained by VMP = 
A Quality Mentoring Relationship for a Child

 Stay connected! Follow VMP on Facebook and Twitter.

Virginia Mentoring Partnership
2500 W. Broad St, Third Floor
Richmond, VA 23220
Virginia Mentoring Partnership is a 501 (c) 3 organization that is supported by grants, corporate donations, individual d onations and in-kind services.  For more information or to support our organization please visit us at 
VMP Thanks Dedicated Board Members 

"Within one quality mentoring relationship, two lives are changed. I have seen two families changed, two communities changed. I can envision a whole city renewed!"
These reflections by VMP Board Member  Don Cowles ring true for so many mentors who are engaged in mentoring relationships with young people in Richmond and throughout Virginia. Don has been a mentor for many years, and as a leader on the Board of Directors, he has been a champion for VMP's focus on raising the quality of mentoring. "VMP's quality system develops quality mentoring programs, [which] sustain healthy mentoring relationships. VMP's culture, its Board and its staff are inspired by a vision of quality mentoring for every child that needs a mentor."

VMP's vision is supported by a dedicated Board of Directors who meet six times a year and are actively engaged in the advising, governance, fundraising and outreach efforts of the organization. At the last board meeting in June, VMP recognized three longtime board members who were ending their terms: Don Cowles, Mieko Timmons, and Nannette Bailey.

They have each contributed to the organization in many ways, and have supported VMP through leadership transitions and the development of new program services. When asked what her hope is for the future of VMP and the mentoring field, Mieko Timmons shared, "My hope and belief is that in all regions across the Commonwealth, there will be a growing need for VMP's services and expertise. I hope that VMP will continue to emphasize the research of mentoring, and its positive impact not only with youth, but with adults who can benefit from having a mentor to encourage and believe in them."

VMP recognizes and appreciates the hard work of our Board members, ambassadors, and partners in advancing the organization's mission. Please join us in extending a thank you to Nannette, Mieko, and Don for their contributions to VMP throughout the years. For more information about opportunities with the VMP Board, contact Elizabeth Bass.

AmeriCorps VISTA Members Wanted

Join our team! Members of VMP's AmeriCorps VISTA cohort are placed at mentoring program host sites across the state to work full-time providing support, developing organizational capacity, and improving youth outcomes. Check out the opportunities that are still available below, and share them with your network!

Virginia Beach READS - Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach READS mentor-tutoring program pairs struggling first grade readers with volunteer tutors. The VISTA Mentor Program Coordinator works to support and develop organizational capacity, resiliency and to drive improved outcomes within the mentoring program. Click here to learn more.

Befriend-a-Child - Fairfax
For 35 years, BeFriend-A-Child has provided opportunities for companionship, guidance and support to children who are at risk of abuse and neglect or who have been abused and neglected. The VISTA will be responsible for recruiting, training, and supporting the volunteer mentors in the program. Click here to learn more.

The Up Center - Portsmouth
Team Up Mentoring is an award-winning mentoring program that has matched hundreds of youth with volunteers from the South Hampton Roads community. 95% of children who participate in their mentoring program for one year show improvement in the realms of school, behavior, and social functioning.  The VISTA will be responsible for recruiting, screening, and matching children of single-parent homes with adults in order to make lasting change in the life of a child. Click here to learn more.

Alexandria Mentoring Partnership (AMP) - Alexandria
AMP is focused on providing support to mentoring organizations in the Alexandria community by acting as an umbrella organization. Additionally, the AMP provides partner programs with opportunities to collaborate and share best practices on mentor recruitment, training, and support through networking and advocacy. The AmeriCorps VISTA will focus on creating a standardized volunteer recruitment plan for AMP's  partner organizations

Powhatan County Public Schools - Powhatan
Powhatan County Public Schools' "Lunch Buddies" Program is focused on connecting youth identified as at-risk with adult volunteer mentors in the community. The AmeriCorps VISTA will focus on creating a sustainability plan for the program, as well as a being an information hub and support system for the PCPS Lunch Buddies Mentors.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Central Blue Ridge - Charlottesville and Albermarle Counties
The VISTA Mentor Program Coordinator will be responsible for screening, enrolling, training and supporting the work of mentors volunteering. Additionally,  they will focus volunteer recruitment efforts in Big Brothers Big Sisters through collaboration with Madison House.

Staunton Mentoring Alliance - Staunton
The Staunton Mentoring Alliance connects Staunton high school youth with responsible adults who help guide these young people through the transition from middle school to high school and from high school to college or employment. Mentors also provide support to help the student maintain or improve school success and explore and prepare for future career opportunities. The Mentor Program Coordinator will be responsible for screening, enrolling, training and supporting the work of mentors volunteering.

STORY - Hopewell
VMP is looking for an AmeriCorps VISTA member to build a new program at South side Transformation Opportunities for Residents and Youth. STORY is focused on the redevelopment of the Hopewell community. The AmeriCorps VISTA will focus on growing STORY's after school mentoring program.

Resources for Programs 
As your program considers training opportunities for staff and mentors, be sure to check out these additional trainings and webinars from some of our partners.

Preparing Mentees and Parents for Successful Matches: MENTOR's Collaborative Mentoring Webinar Series
When: July 21st, 2016 1-2:15pm
Where: online
Cost: Free
About: An important yet neglected area of focus for many mentoring programs is the process of preparing mentees (and their families) for the match.  When staff provides effective preparation and training, it can promote safety, teach important relational skills, and bolster parental involvement. 

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training: VTSS Project AWARE
When: July 25th, 8:30am-4:30pm
Where 3600 West Broad Street,  Suite 117  Richmond, VA 23230
Cost:  Free 
About: Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) is a training program that teaches participants to recognize and respond to warning signs of mental health issues and crises in adolescents (ages 12-18) and teaches a 5-step action plan for crisis and non-crisis situations. It is an interactive training with hands-on activities, role plays, and simulations. 
Register here by July 21st.

Complete State of Mentoring Survey for a Chance to Win Free Training

In collaboration with MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership, VMP is launching the 2016 National Mentoring Program Survey This is a chance for VMP to capture a snapshot of mentoring activity in  Virginia.  Why is this important?   The data collected through these efforts will help MENTOR and VMP:
  • Design more effective trainings to meet your organization's needs
  • Target new investments that can fill gaps in services in high need communities or for specific groups of children
  • Provide more detail about community needs and gaps for recruitment campaigns, advocacy, and funding efforts for the field
In appreciation of your part in this data collection effort, we're sweetening the deal by offering a random drawing of a program to receive one free training session ($300 value).  Please allow approximately 30 minutes for completion - The survey also has a save feature that will allow you to return to the page later. 

The regional, state-wide, and national reports resulting from these efforts will be sent to programs to help inform their programming, recruitment, communications, advocacy, and fundraising requests. Click here to complete the survey.