The mentor program was developed by the Department of Health and Human Resources of Marion County in conjunction with Fairmont State College and the Marion County Family Resource Network to address the problem of delinquent behavior in juveniles at risk of becoming involved in or currently involved in the Marion County court system. This program asks for a one year commitment and requires volunteers to participate in a matched relationship with a juvenile who is at risk of or has displayed delinquent behavior as determined by family members, school personnel, therapists/counselors, youth group leaders or court officials. Goals of the program include the following:
Prevent future delinquent behavior
Provide juveniles with a positive adult role model
Involve the community in the justice system.
The volunteers are asked to spend 1 to 3 hours per week with their designated match and keep a log of all activities, as well as problems and revelations. Suggested activities include assistance with school work, attendance at community activities, and participation in extracurricular and athletic events. Ideally, volunteers can offer emotional support, guidance, and specific assistance to juveniles. Prior to being matched with a juvenile, each volunteer must attend four training sessions, on subjects including, but not limited to, confidentiality, family dynamics, child development including expected behaviors and value development, mandated reporting, and expectation of journals. The volunteers will meet individually with the coordinators on a monthly basis ad will participate in bimonthly in service training for continuing skills development