For Immediate Release June 16, 2022
Media Contact: Emily Listowich [email protected]
MENTOR Vermont seeks applicants for Vermont Mentoring Grants 2022-2023
Burlington, VT—MENTOR Vermont announces the start of the application process for Vermont Mentoring Grants 2022-2023. As the only mentorship-specific grant in Vermont, these annual grants are designed to support new and existing youth mentorship programs statewide that pair young mentees (ages 5-22) with mentors long-term, one-on-one adult volunteers. one, quality-based mentoring relationships. The Vermont Mentoring Grants 2022-2023 will award $306,000 in funding. There is no maximum amount for the scholarships, the amounts of the scholarships are based on a category of criteria. The 2021-2022 scholarships ranged from $3,500 to $55,000.
The grants have traditionally been made possible through support from the AD Henderson Foundation and the Vermont Department for Children and Families. This round of grants will help youth mentoring organizations across the state recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and recover mentee-mentor match numbers. Nancy Jones, program coordinator for The Mentoring Project of the Upper Valley, shares, “Without MENTOR Vermont, I’m afraid our program wouldn’t survive. It’s not just the money we get, it’s the support technique and the freely given advice that keeps us running well.” MENTOR Vermont offers these support services to all youth mentoring agencies in Vermont, regardless of their funding status.
The pandemic has underscored the importance of youth mentorship, as all Vermonters, youth and adults, have experienced prolonged isolation. “Mentoring relationships provide individualized, one-on-one attention and support, a core component of pandemic recovery.” said Chad Butt, executive director of MENTOR Vermont. “Youth mentoring agencies that receive grants enable safe and effective youth-adult mentoring relationships to flourish in places where young people live, work, learn and play, helping to address gender inequalities. bouts that afflict young people in Vermont.”
This year’s Vermont Mentoring Grants will also support mentoring agencies in pursuing the integration of racial equity into their programs and in addressing areas of inequality. MENTOR Vermont continues to support collaboration between local programs, ensuring that the youth served can continue their mentoring relationship until they graduate from high school.
In the 2021-2022 grant year, MENTOR Vermont and its funding partners awarded more than $330,675 to 22 grantees through the Vermont Mentoring Grants, to support youth mentorship programs coordinated by schools and nonprofit organizations in local Vermont communities. Through May 31, 2022, MENTOR Vermont has awarded nearly $675,000.00 in grants to youth mentoring agencies in its 2021-2022 fiscal year. Additional grant opportunities have been made possible by the Vermont Community Foundation’s VT COVID-19 Response Fund and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP).
Prospective applicants should review information on grant guidelines and how to apply, by visiting www.mentorvt.org/funding. Applicants will need to create a profile and complete a short eligibility questionnaire in our grantmaking system. Complete applications will be due by August 12, 2022.
This year’s grants are designed to fund one-on-one youth-serving Vermont youth-adult mentorship programs that offer at least 25 weeks of programming per year and whose pairings strive to meet for at least one hour a week or four hours per month (depending on the program model). This includes: the first year of implementing new mentoring programs; expanding established programs to serve more youth or reach into underserved areas; and continued support for established mentoring programs that adhere to best practices.
About mentorship throughout the COVID-19 pandemic:
Since the onset of COVID-19 in March 2020, Vermont Youth Mentoring and Mentoring Programs have ramped up and continued to adjust their approach to meet the needs of the youth they serve.
Responses to MENTOR Vermont’s 2021 Young Mentor Survey help illustrate the profound impact of a mentor during this challenging time:
• 86% of mentees shared: “my mentor was someone I could share my feelings and experiences related to COVID-19 with.”
• 95% of mentees said “having a mentor has made a positive difference in my life”.
• 95% of mentees said: “my mentor is someone I can count on”.
• 96% of mentees shared, “My mentor makes me feel like I matter.”
Young people need adults who support them in their lives more than ever. Programs across the state are actively seeking new mentors to meet the increased need. To learn more about becoming a mentor in your community, visit www.mentorvt.org/become-a-mentor.
About MENTOR Vermont:
MENTOR Vermont aims to close the mentoring gap and foster equity through quality mentoring relationships so that every young person in Vermont has the supportive relationships they need to grow and thrive. To achieve this vision, MENTOR Vermont provides funding, resources, and support to the field of youth mentoring in Vermont to strengthen the quality and expand the reach of mentoring relationships statewide. In addition to managing the Vermont Mentorship Grants, the organization provides technical support to mentorship program staff, maintains an online program directory and volunteer referral system, maintains a program management database based on quality, raises public awareness about mentorship, works with programs to ensure they follow best practices, and leads statewide mentorship initiatives. MENTOR Vermont is the state affiliate of MENTOR National. For more information on mentoring programs and initiatives in Vermont, visit www.mentorvt.org.
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