Local schools benefit from Vermont mentoring program

ADDISON COUNTY — This fall, through the 2015-2016 Vermont Mentoring Grants initiative, Mobius awarded 27 grants, totaling $327,715, to support adult-to-youth mentoring programs throughout the state. This funding will support 106 new and existing program sites, and nearly 1,900 adult-to-youth mentor pairs in communities across Vermont.
Mobius awarded four grants, totaling nearly $20,000, to the Addison Northeast Supervisory Union: a $7,100 grant to the Starksboro Mentoring Program at Robinson Elementary School; a $4,100 grant to the Mount Abraham Union High School Mentoring program; a $3,100 grant to the Monkton Mentors program at Monkton Central School; and a $2,600 grant to the Lincoln Mentors program at Lincoln Community School.
“Funding for our program will go toward ensuring mentor matches have a successful and fun-filled time together,” said Chessy Kelley, coordinator of Lincoln Mentors. “Activities will be offered outside of school to support their relationship, such as: special events, movie tickets, restaurant gift certificates, mentor support get-togethers and training, and much more to foster connection and growth in the mentor and mentee relationship throughout the year.”
“Mt. Abe Mentors will use the money so generously granted by the Vermont Mentoring Grants to allow for fun activities that give the mentors and mentees wonderful experiences together,” said Brenda McKean, coordinator of the Mount Abraham Mentoring Program. “For example, mentors and mentees will be able to enjoy biking adventures with well-maintained bikes, and play basketball or Frisbee.”
Mobius also awarded a $45,000 grant to Everybody Wins! Vermont to support its literacy programming statewide. Everybody Wins! coordinates reading-based mentoring programs for more than 500 students at 22 elementary schools throughout the state, including Bridport Central School, Mary Hogan Elementary in Middlebury, Salisbury Community School, Shoreham Elementary School, and Vergennes Union Elementary School.
The Vermont Mentoring Grants are made possible through funding support from the A.D. Henderson Foundation, The Permanent Fund for Vermont’s Children, and the Vermont Agency of Human Services. This year’s grants are designed to provide continuing support for established programs that demonstrate they meet best practices, assist the planning of new programs, and support programs in their first or second year of implementation.
All 2015-2016 grantees have committed to joining Mobius’ K-12 Mentoring Initiative by collaborating with its programs in their region to ensure that the youth they serve have the opportunity to continue meeting with their mentors through high school graduation. Additionally, grantees have completed the Quality Mentoring System (an assessment system developed by Mobius and MENTOR, The National Mentoring Partnership), and have validated that they are meeting all local and national program quality standards. Lastly, starting this grant year, all funded programs will use common questions to survey their mentors and mentees and track youth outcome data in the following key areas: resiliency, pro-social skills, future aspirations, connectedness to community and attitude toward school. 
For more information on all 27 of this year’s grant award recipients, please visit mobiusmentors.org/vermont-mentoring-grants/2015-2016.

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