By FCPS & Fairfax County Government
Healthy Minds
November 16, 2018

MentorWorks is the school-based mentoring program in Fairfax County Public Schools with a mission to connect every student to a caring, responsible adult.

What is a mentor?

A mentor is someone who, along with parents, provides young people with support, counsel, friendship, reinforcement, and a constructive example. A mentor is a good listener, someone who cares, and someone who wants to help youth bring out strengths that are already there. A mentor is a caring, responsible person who is interested in giving time to a student and encouraging the development of strengths and capabilities. Youth look for someone to listen and support them. Things that may seem easy to adults are often mysterious to young people. Providing guidance and structure to youth allows them an opportunity to develop self-esteem and self-confidence.

The Power of Mentoring

  • Youth who are mentored believe that they matter.
  • They are 80% more likely to seek guidance from an adult when they need it.
  • They are 55% more likely to go to college.
  • Bonus: 75% of youth who are mentored describe themselves as being “happy!"

Check out this inspirational video on the impact of mentoring.

A mentor helps connect youth with resources, safe places, and structured activities. Mentors provide a positive role model, assistance in obtaining a marketable skill through the support of education, and an opportunity to give back through community service.

All of the following are important activities that mentors provide in the lives of their students:

  • Academic Support - Encouraging students to reach academic success by showing the benefits of staying in school and evaluating educational choices.
  • Role Modeling - Helping students see and strive for broader horizons and possibilities than they may see in their present environments.
  • Attention and Support - Mentors provide dependable and consistent attention and support through listening, guiding, and encouraging students to reach their full potential.

Interested in finding a mentor for your child?

FCPS mentoring programs are coordinated at the school level. They occur at the student's school site during the school day. If you would like to find a mentor for your child, please contact your child’s school counselor for assistance.

Interested in mentoring a student?

Please visit the MentorWorks website to find out how to become a mentor. This website describes the onboarding process and the level of commitment required. MentorWorks would like your involvement and hopes to hear from you soon!

Healthy Minds is for parents, educators, and community-based providers who are interested in supporting student mental health and wellness. It represents a collaboration between FCPS’ Office of Intervention and Prevention Services and the Fairfax County Government. SUBSCRIBE to Healthy Minds and receive a monthly digest of our most recent articles.