National Mentoring Summit
On January 27, 2016 Dare Mighty Things joined nearly 1,000 youth mentoring practitioners, researchers, advocates, corporate partners, and government and civic leaders for the sixth annual National Mentoring Summit. This signature event for the youth mentoring field was convened by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and was supported by a diverse group of public, private, and nonprofit stakeholders, including the Summit’s Premiere and Lead Sponsors, AT&T, and Bank of America, and presenting partners Corporation for National and Community Service, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, and America’s Promise Alliance. This year, two Media Partners, LinkedIn and American Graduate/Corporation for Public Broadcasting, also supported the event based on their commitment to expanding mentoring for young people. Four plenary sessions and more than 60 individual workshops explored this year’s theme of “Connection | Growth | Opportunity,” covering a versatile array of topics, including informal mentoring, youth voice, incorporating research and data into programs, and mentoring as a facet of improved police-community relations and reducing inequality.
Through the twenty-five year history of both MENTOR and Dare Mighty Things, our collaboration and support has contributed to the growth and development of youth mentoring in the United States. Dare Mighty Things was instrumental in the development of MENTOR’s original Elements of Effective Practice in Mentoring and in the construction of subsequent revisions. DMT also supported MENTOR in the Department of Health and Human Services Caregiver’s Choice program for children impacted by incarceration. Participation in the annual Summit provided an opportunity for DMT to continue to learn from, and share experiences with our nation’s leading researchers and practitioners in youth mentoring. This year’s focus on empowering relationships was especially relevant to DMT’s support for the new Amachi Mentoring enhancements funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and led by Rev. Dr. W. Wilson Goode, Sr. It was also very rewarding to see the expansion of Youth Initiated Mentoring, an approach DMT designed and developed for the National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program more than 20 years ago. Thanks to MENTOR, we all continue to learn, adapt, and expand opportunities available to disadvantaged and disengaged youth.