Youth in Two Communities to Benefit from Mentoring

Adult Mentor with Youth Mentee Caucasian Sitting On StepsNow Recruiting for New Programs in Roanoke and Franklin County

Positive adult role models can have a life-changing impact on youth in our community. In both Franklin County and Roanoke, Goodwill is currently working to provide mentorship opportunities for area youth. The Franklin County Youth Mentoring Program is currently recruiting mentors, and at YouthHQ @Goodwill in Roanoke, enrollment is ongoing for both youth mentees and adult mentors.

Franklin County Youth Mentoring Program

In October, Goodwill announced that it had received a grant from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) for nearly $475,000 to serve 105 youth in Franklin County over the next three years.  At a time when Franklin County is seeing an increase in the involvement of youth with the juvenile justice system, Goodwill, is now offering Youth Mentoring to more individuals between the ages of 12 and 17 who have been involved with the juvenile justice system or are at risk of becoming involved.

The new mentoring program goal is to encourage and guide youth to develop positive relationships, achieve success in school, and avoid risky behaviors, and to decrease their involvement with the juvenile justice system. Goodwill is partnering with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Virginia to use their evidence-based mentoring model for this program.

“We are very excited about this new opportunity to provide mentoring services in the Franklin County community,” states Mary Ann Gilmer, Vice President of Mission Services for Goodwill Industries of the Valleys. “The partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters enables Goodwill to utilize the evidenced-based mentoring model that Big Brothers Big Sisters utilizes. This type of service is not currently offered in Franklin County, and we believe it will help to move the needle on the rising rates of involvement by youth in Franklin County with the juvenile justice system. Big Brothers Big Sisters will then evaluate for the effectiveness of the services provided to the youth through the program.”

YouthHQ @Goodwill

In Roanoke, mentoring programs are available through YouthHQ@Goodwill. YouthHQ is a youth and teen center located at 2502 Melrose Avenue, NW. The center features activities and offerings for middle and high school youth and the community, including youth mentoring where the young adults will gain confidence, improve decision-making abilities, and gain skills to achieve goals and reach their fullest potential through their interactions with positive adult role models. Middle and high school students in the Roanoke Valley are eligible for mentoring at YouthHQ.

Click here to learn more about Goodwill mentoring programs for youth and how to become a youth mentor.