What is Online Teen Mentoring?
Teens are at the cusp of adulthood but the majority of their influence comes from peers. As a teen mentor, you have the ability to become one of those peers and walk alongside of them.
Teens send us questions every single day. Teens mentoring provides an awesome opportunity for followers of Jesus to come alongside teens who want to discuss the issues that really matter to them. Each mentor can share God’s love in a relevant way and connect the teens to other resources wherever possible.
- Teens send in question which is routed to The Mentor Center (TMC)
- TMC matches the email with a mentor
- The mentor responds addressing the felt need and sharing the hope of Christ.
- TMC protects your privacy and the teen’s privacy too
How can I get involved?
The application and training process are thorough and easy to follow. You can be trained and start ministering within a week. The only skills you need to become an online mentor are a heart for God and the ability to send an email. Do you have an hour a week to help a teen?
- Read the Qualifications & Guidelines
- Fill out a Mentoring Application
- Criminal Background Check required
- If you are on staff with Power to Change, please use this application form.
- If you are already a mentor, please email us and indicate your desire to mentor teens.
*Note* be sure to check the box for teen mentoring, about half way down the application:
You should receive a confirmation right away that your application has been received. One of our co-ordinators will go through your application, contact your pastoral reference and will let you know the status of your application. Upon approval you can start the training right away. All mentor training happens online so you can do it whenever it is convenient for you. If you have any questions you can always ask.
Is TMC complicated? Do I need to be good with computers?
Using TMC is very similar to sending an email. Log in, open the message and hit reply to start your response. All mentors receive training and coaches are there to support you every step of the way.
What if get a question I can’t answer?
As part of the application process you can choose the topics that you feel comfortable talking about. If you ever get a question that makes you uncomfortable, simply reassign it back to you Community Leader and another mentor will take care of it. If a teen writes in in a crisis situation we have specially trained crisis mentors ready to help them.
How much time does mentoring take?
The training process is often completed in a week. Mentoring takes as little as an hour a week. You can choose how many emails you would like to answer starting from just one a week. One email a week often takes less than an hour to respond to. You can always change the number of emails you receive and our system lets you put yourself on hold if you’re going on vacation or need a break.
Is TMC secure?
Yes. TruthMedia has gone to great lengths to ensure that TMC protects everyone’s privacy. As part of your training you’ll also be taught safe online practices to make sure that your mentoring experience is positive and safe.
Is there a cost involved?
There is no cost to volunteers who want to mentor. There are costs involved in running the mentoring program and these are met by the generous support of donors who see the ministry value of teen mentoring. If you would like to support the mentoring program please contact info [at] thementorcenter.com and ask about our Sponsor a Mentor program.
How do I get a criminal check? Why do I have to do that?
The law requires a criminal check for anyone working with minors. It’s much easier than it sounds. Once we have received your application our co-ordinator can walk you through the process to get a criminal check.
The initial email came in saying only two words: “Girlfriend issues”. As the mentor and Jay corresponded back and forth, much more was shared. Jay expressed his concern about his life by saying “things have just been going down the tubes lately. the girlfriend situation is worse, my job is becoming more and more hectic, my family is falling apart, and I just feel alone because I don’t have anyone to bounce my thoughts and feelings off of. I hope you can be my soundboard. Well, I have class in the morning, but I hope to hear back from you.”
The mentor: Sounds like life is kind of a swirl about now. Kind of hard to keep your feet anchored when the seas are difficult. Do you have a faith walk of some kind? Do you know that God loves you not matter what you are going through? For me, I know that when everything about me is unsteady….He is always steady. Can you share your faith walk with me?
Jay: The seas are like 50 foot waves as of recently. I have no idea what a faith walk is. Could you explain that to me?
The conversation is in progress, but it is incredible how an email with two words led to a conversation that is now moving into a faith discussion.
Two year mentorship
On June 2008, a hope coach sent the contact info for a young woman “Having problems with an older guy.” Now, in June 2010, two years later, after many emails, here are the words of the young lady to her mentor. “I really enjoy being in touch with you again. it helps me tons. really a lot talking about God. I just want to thank you for your support. And teaching me about God.. i try not to go down. Because emotionally it’s so hard for me to get back up. take care, I’ll write again.”
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