PHONE: 03 5381 0122

MATES Mentoring

The MATES Mentoring Program provides positive role models who mentor, assist, target, engage and enhance the skills and life experiences of young people. MATES matches young people (mentees) with a volunteer (mentor) from the local community. Mentors and mentees catch up for one hour, once a fortnight for one year. MATES is a great way to volunteer in the community.

For more information please complete the following form.

Volunteering with WSMLLEN
We need volunteers who are:

  • over the age of 18
  • have a genuine concern or interest in young people
  • want to make a difference in a young person’s life
  • are able to spend one hour a fortnight with a young person for one year
  • already have or are able to obtain a Working with Children check
If you decide that you want to be a part of the MATES Mentoring Program you can then:

  • Fill out an online application form here.
  • Download and print an application form contained in the: MATES Mentor Information Pack
  • When your application has been accepted, you will be invited to attend a training session before being matched with a mentee.

 Start making a difference in a young person’s life!

Download the MATES Schools Brochure to find out more.

Mentor training can be undertaken in 3 two-hour sessions, (e.g. over three consecutive days or all three sessions on a full day).
There is no cost to attend MATES training sessions.

Training Times

Evening training sessions are usually held from 5.30 pm – 7.30 pm
Full-day  training sessions run  from 9.30 am – 4.30 pm
Training dates are promoted on our Facebook page or you can contact our office to find out when the next training sessions will be held

The training will cover topics specifically designed to provide positive role models who mentor, assist, target, engage and enhance the skills and life experiences of young people within our communities.

Session 1 is the basic level of mentor training, and completion of this session is the minimum requirement to mentor a student in a school setting. Sessions 2 & 3 provide additional training to mentor young people with more complex issues. Mentors are encouraged to undertake all three sessions before deciding if they would be prepared to mentor a young person with more complex needs.

Session 1

Participants will cover the foundation learning necessary to become a Youth Mentor within the MATES Mentoring Program. Session 1 will build skills to actively build and maintain a mentor relationship, provide an insight into young people and challenges faced, as well as provide engagement tools, techniques and strategies.

Session 2 

Participants will cover in more detail the culture of disadvantage, strengths versus deficits, child abuse, trauma, challenging behaviours and strategies and techniques to support young people. This session also reflects on substance use (alcohol and other drugs) and what is meant by harm reduction.

Session 3 

Participants will be guided through the escalation cycle and aggression along with tools and strategies for deescalation. Session 3 will also touch on suicide and self-harm, and look at the need and strategies for self-care and personal safety. In conclusion, participants will be taken through the stages of planning a mentor relationship and reflect back on the policies and procedures including the code of conduct, incident reporting, resources, and the process of matching.

Please note:

**Anyone attending the training session should have already attended a Youth Mentoring Information Session or have been comprehensively informed by Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN before registering for training events.

**Session 1 is equivalent to the previous MATES mentor training. Existing MATES Mentors who have already undertaken this training do not need to repeat this session and can attend sessions 2 & 3 to extend their training. Sessions 2 & 3 have been designed to provide additional skills and understanding for mentors of young people who may have more significant and complex needs and behaviours.

***Mentors through the MATES Mentoring Program are subject to an application process including Working with Children’s Check and a National Police Check.

****Some information provided can be considered provocative, offensive and may cause emotional distress for some people. If you have concerns with the topics to be covered, please contact WSMLLEN prior to the training on 5381 0122.

The training provided may be suitable to support other programs, community initiatives, or people working directly or indirectly with youth. Other interested parties should contact Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN before attending. Youth Mentoring in Horsham and the greater Wimmera and Southern Mallee region is a key community priority.

Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN is committed to promoting and protecting the interests and safety of children. We have zero tolerance for child abuse. Everyone working at Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN is responsible for the care and protection of children and reporting information about child abuse.

Child protection is a shared responsibility between the Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN, all employees, workers, contractors, associates, volunteers and members of the Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN community.  The Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN ‘Volunteer Child Safe and Duty of Care Policy’ helps to ensure that all parties are aware of their responsibilities for identifying possible occasions for child abuse and establishes controls and procedures for preventing such abuse and/or detecting such abuse when it occurs.

All volunteers in Wimmera Southern Mallee LLEN programs will be informed of the ‘Volunteer Child Safe and Duty of Care Policy’ during their training process.

We thank our Community Champions who provide flexible work arrangements for their staff to mentor students in the MATES mentoring program during business hours

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