Mentoring FAQ

What is mentoring?

Mentoring is the presence of a caring, responsible adult who provides support, motivation, guidance, advice and friendship in order to help a youth succeed.

What does mentoring mean to a young person?

To a young person, mentoring means to have a responsible, caring adult role model and friend to look up to. This role model can help the youth achieve and maintain goals in placement, life skills and relationships.

What do I need to do to become a mentor?

  1. Have the desire to help a youth

  2. Submit the complete mentor application

  3. Submit to a background check (live-scan fingerprints, etc.)

  4. Attend one training day at the Montana Youth Challenge Academy at the University of Montana Western in Dillon.

  5. Follow through for 12 months after the cadet graduates the Residential portion of the program, focusing on Placement and Life Coaching opportunities

  6. Provide a monthly report during the 12 month Post Residential Phase to assigned case manager on the progress of the cadet.

How often can I visit my Cadet at the academy?

A mentor, once screened, is allowed to visit the cadet by scheduling the visit in advance with the Mentor Coordinator. However, we understand that many mentors will not be able to visit cadets beyond the mentor training day. Visits are NOT mandatory.

What happens if I run into a problem with my Cadet?

If a problem arises in the relationship, the Mentor is encouraged to discuss the problem with the Cadet, Mentor Coordinator and/or the Case Manager.

What if my help is not wanted?

It is not easy for many Cadets to trust an adult. Patience and time is key in developing a relationship. Some of these relationships will be long-term and some will be short-term. Regardless of the length of time of the Cadet/Mentor relationship, the Cadet will almost always gain something positive from the experience.