YVCF’s COVID-19 Emergency Fund supports a New Approach to School-based Mentoring

Partners in Routt County (PRC) is excited to announce a new Volunteer School-Based Mentoring (SBM) program for the ‘20-‘21 school year. Traditionally, PRC places 6-10 paid mentors in schools to support up to 10 target students and provide other needed services. Due to funding cuts, that program has been reduced to only three positions. PRC, recognizing that this reduction in mentoring services comes at a critical time when students, teachers, and parents need the academic and emotional support more than ever, created the Volunteer SBM program to meet the need. The program combines PRC’s proven mentoring strategies with a new approach for engaging volunteers and even allows expanding the service into more schools than previously served.

Funding for this program has generously been provided by the Yampa Valley Community Foundation (YVCF). “Through establishing our COVID-19 Relief Fund and working with local partners to support vulnerable populations, YVCF understands that youth have been disproportionately impacted by coronavirus. The Foundation is proud to be a partner to launch the new school-based mentoring program and assist PRC with their excellent work mentoring at-risk youth. The wellness and success of students are a priority to the Foundation and to the community,” said Helen Beall, Community Impact Manager at YVCF.

Interested adults and older youth (approximately 16 years and older) are encouraged to apply to become a mentor.  Mentors will be screened and trained prior to being matched with a student, 3rd – 12th grade. PRC will work with the mentor, mentee and parent to arrange weekly regular check-ins.  Mentors spend a total of one hour per week with their mentees, often broken into shorter sessions. These can take place virtually or in-person; PRC has established COVID-19 safety protocols for their youth room. All matches are carefully supervised and supported, and mentor trainings are provided throughout the year.

“We are grateful to YVCF for the opportunity to offer this innovative approach to serve youth in the face of the pandemic and help mitigate the negative impact on students, families, and teachers,” said PRC Executive Director Michelle Petix. “We could all use extra support in our lives during this challenging time, especially with the changing educational and social landscape.”

To learn more about becoming a Volunteer School Based Mentor or to refer a mentee, contact Kirra Dyer: kirra@partnersrouttcounty.org or download a mentor application at www.partnersrouttcounty.org

About Partners in Routt County

Since 1996, PRC has been serving some of our community’s most vulnerable youth with a mission to “Build resilient youth in Routt County by creating and supporting meaningful mentoring relationships.” PRC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, EIN: 84- 1339921 and remains the only dedicated mentoring organization in the county.