Youth Mentor

Name of agency and statement of purpose:  The Karen Organization of Minnesota’s (KOM) mission is to enhance the quality of life for Karen and other refugees from Burma in Minnesota by assisting refugees to settle, integrate and become increasingly self-sufficient while fostering cultural knowledge and understanding.

Title: Youth Mentor

Purpose/objective: KOM’s youth mentor program matches local volunteers with Karen youth in St. Paul schools in one-on-one relationship during an academic year. The goal of this program is to provide refugee youth with someone who can offer friendship, support and guidance with day-to-day issues as well as in planning for the future.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Attend a mentor training session when you first join the program
  • Have contact with your mentee at least once a week and meet face-to-face at least bi-weekly
  • Attend youth mentor meetings and activities when scheduled

Time commitment: Minimum of 1 day per week for 8-12 months (starting in October 2017)

Location: Up to the mentor/mentee (home of the mentor or mentee, local restaurants or coffee shops, community events, parks and other public places, etc.)

Qualifications: Friendly, fun, responsible college students or adults who are knowledgeable of the community and able to provide guidance to youth

Measures: Mentors are required to submit an end-of-year evaluation of their mentorship activities.

Benefits: We hope our youth mentors build a long-lasting friendship with their mentees that extend beyond the period of mentorship. During the mentorship period, mentors learn how to be reliable and conscientious of others as they are exposed to other cultures and lifestyles.

How to apply/contact: Please complete KOM’s Volunteer Application online or contact Suzanne Olive to receive a paper application. Volunteers will complete an interview to discuss their interest in mentorship and be subject to a background and reference check. KOM will match mentors and mentees based on gender and common interests.

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