In BeNCH CRC we recognise the value of a mentor getting alongside some of our service users. We have had some fantastic feedback from some of our service users saying how much they have appreciated the extra support, encouragement and understanding they have received from their mentor.
Mentors are volunteers and members of our local communities and they give up some of their free time to work with our service users. This work can be very demanding, challenging and extremely rewarding.
In terms of what a mentor does, there are no strict definitions but it is about being alongside a service user and supporting them as they progress through their time with us. It could involve attending meetings with a service user (i.e. housing interviews, appointments with their Probation Officer and so on) or helping in a Job Club. Some mentors might specialise in specific areas such as housing, general support, education or in supporting women service users.
Some of our mentors are ‘peer mentors’. This meas they have a criminal record themselves and may have been to prison or managed by Probation in the past. Peer mentors often have a special understanding and empathy with service users which can be used to good effect.
If you are interested in knowing more about mentoring, please contact any of our supply chain partners who will be delighted to hear from you: