My mentoring experience: Jolene Young
I will be honest with you; I didn’t know there was a mentoring scheme in Moray until I started my job as a School Co-ordinator with DYW Moray at the end of 2020.
During my induction, we met the Mentoring Young Talent (MYT) team and found out about the programme and the support they offered to young people in Moray.
That was when I decided I wanted to become a mentor.
But I was still really busy trying to find my feet with my new role, so I knew it wasn’t the right time for me to sign up as I was too distracted.
In April, I was ready, so I spoke to Michaella Henderson, Project Officer for Mentoring Young Talent.
She talked me through the process and sent me a form to complete. The form collects details about you and your interests, this helps with the matching process.
Full training is given to mentors and, due to restrictions, my training was online. In addition to safeguarding, the training gave a great overview about issues affecting young people in Moray.
I think one of the really important things to know about this scheme is they are really careful when matching mentors and mentees.
The information you provide about yourself and your interests is key for matching, as they want to do everything possible to ensure the match is correct for both parties.
This does mean that upon completing your training and getting your PVG, you may not be immediately paired with someone.
For me, it took a few months before I got a call to say there was someone they felt would benefit from having me as a mentor and did I want to meet them – of course I said yes!
Michaella joined us for our first meeting, which made sure it wasn’t awkward for either of us.
Over a burger, we found out a bit more about one another and discovered we both had a mutual love of dogs, crystals and an array of other things.
The hour flew in and I was delighted when my mentee spoke about our next meeting.
Following the Christmas holidays - and a bout of Covid on my part - we have met weekly, chatting about school, books and a bit of everything.
I wanted to be a mentor to help to make a difference. The ask is very small, one hour a week to help to support a young person who has faced challenges.
The training and support you get from the MYT team is great, and they are always on hand if you have any questions or concerns.