Youth In Transition

YIT Mentoring Services For Youth

AOI’s YIT Mentoring services are designed to facilitate readiness for independence into adulthood for youth ages 14-21 who were in foster care placement after their 14th birthday. This program currently services Midland, Gladwin, Isabella and Saginaw Counties.

Youth will be matched with a qualified trained adult mentor based on common interests and overall compatibility. Youth and mentor are to meet face to face a minimum of two times per month and spend a combined total of four hours per month for at least 12 months. Youth, mentor and mentor specialist will develop SMART goals together at the beginning of the match. Mentor and youth will participate in appropriate activities that align with the goals that were created and develop a positive supportive relationship.

Availability

  • Midland, Gladwin, Isabella and Saginaw Counties
  • This program requires a referral from the Department of Health and Human Services.
  • Open to Youth in Midland, Gladwin, Isabella and Saginaw Counties who are currently in or previously placed in Foster Care between the ages of 14 and 21.

How to Access Services

  • Contact your Midland, Gladwin, Isabella or Saginaw County DHHS worker to inquire about a referral.
  • To find out more information on the program, please e-mail any questions to Stephanie Curtis at scurtis@aoicw.org.

Benefits of Mentoring Youth

“Show me a successful individual and I’ll show you someone who had real positive influences in his or her life. I don’t care what you do for a living — if you do it well I’m sure there was someone cheering you on or showing the way. A mentor.” — Denzel Washington

It’s no surprise that children in foster care are among our nation’s most vulnerable young people. A healthy mentoring relationship can be critical to achieving both academic and personal goals. Mentors offer consistency, steadiness and support to children and youth who have experienced abusive or neglectful situations.  A mentor may be the only consistent relationship – the only semblance of family – a youth may ever have.  Mentoring can:

  • Increase high school graduation rates
  • Lower high school dropout rates
  • Increase healthier relationships and lifestyle choices
  • Foster a positive attitude about school
  • Increase college enrollment rates and higher educational aspirations
  • Enhance self-esteem and self-confidence
  • Improve behavior, both at home and at school
  • Strengthen relationships with parents, foster parents, teachers and peers
  • Improve interpersonal skills
  • Decrease the likelihood of initiating drug and alcohol use

If those aren’t reasons enough to consider mentoring, mentors also benefit from investing in others. Mentoring can help the mentor:

  • Aid someone realize their full potential- Everyone has unique talents and gifts. Celebrating individual talents helps to improve their own life, achieve their goals and help others.
  • Give Back- Spend time investing in your community. Mentoring youth in your community is a powerful way to invest in the future.
  • Learn more about Themselves- Meaningful relationships are a two-way street. Mentors learn more about their personal strengths, weaknesses, knowledge, experience and beliefs.
  • Change Lives- A mentor may be the only stable, positive impact in a youth’s life.

Interested in Being a Mentor for Youth in the YIT Program?

Mentors are responsible for guiding and advocating for the youth in areas such as independent living skills, conflict resolution, honesty and values, and problem solving. Mentors will connect youth with appropriate resources within the community such as tutoring, assertiveness vs. aggressiveness training, and physical/mental health services. Mentors will work with the Mentor Specialist to ensure that the youth’s needs are being met.

  • Application
  • Required Clearance Documents
  • List of other information required

Downloadable Program Information

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