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DSABC One-on-One Mentoring Program

The DSABC One-on-One Mentoring Program is a school based program that matches a supportive and caring adult who assists students to succeed in school by developing a one on one relationship. Mentors serve as a positive adult role model providing moral support and encouragement.

The objective of the mentor program is to improve academic performance, attendance, behavior, attitude toward school, and most importantly, self-esteem and motivation. The long-term goal is dropout prevention.

What do Mentors Do?

  • Engage in a one-on-one relationship with a student, offering support and guidance
  • Act as a friend, confidant and positive adult role model
  • Meet with their mentee weekly for one hour at school
  • Spend time playing games, reading, talking, listening and helping with academics

How do I Become a Mentor?

DSABC requires that new mentors complete an online application along with forms to authorize a criminal background check and DCF search and attend a one-hour training session.  Mentors are assigned to a school based on their preference for grade level, proximity to work/home and need.

Mentor Application Forms

Why is Mentoring Important?

Independent research has shown that teachers reported the following improvements in children who were enrolled in school based mentoring programs:

  • 64% of students developed more positive attitudes towards school
  • 58% achieved higher grades in social studies, languages, and math
  • 60% improved their relationships with adults
  • 56% improved their relationships with peers
  • 64% developed high levels of self-confidence
  • 62% were more likely to trust their teachers and students were less likely to repeat a grade

What My Mentor Means to Me

“My memory of Joe is that he was an unusually smart and hard-working man who had an awesome career and a family.  I'm ten times as grateful for him now then I was then.  He gave good advice and I ignored a lot of it, but I pass it on now; and remember that I was once the same kind of teenager that I run into today.  When I became a parent sophomore year of HS, he gave me the summer job that got me the car that got the baby to a sitter, and me through high school (My wife and I have a home in Dallas, GA and we're doing OK.  The child we had in high school is 17 and we have two younger daughters 9 and 3).  As far as people in my life at the time who were willing and able to do something like that for me, he was 'it'; and he delivered.  Reflecting on it all reminds me that great communities are created by the selflessness of the people in it.  I try to live that the best that I can.”

 “I think the organization you represent is awesome and I appreciate what you all are doing for the youth up there.  I'm sure every person out there that ever had a mentor of any type remembers something, appreciates it and finds a way to pay it forward.  It wouldn't be happening up there in Danbury over the last 27 years without you all.” -Chaka O. graduated in 1999 mentored by Joseph C.

“Having a mentor has truly been a blessing.  I was very lucky to be able to have mentor, especially during one of the hardest times in my life.  My mentor Danielle made me want to be a better person and work hard to get to where I wanted to be because I knew she’d always be there beside me because she chose to be.” - Morgan

“My mentor has meant so much to me.  I feel like I can be more open with her about my situations and problems.  She has made a tremendous difference in my life by making me feel comfortable with who I am and what I do.  She is really open with me and gives me a choice of what I want to say and do.  I thank her so much and I love her from the bottom of my heart.” - Emily

“Having Rick as my mentor made a huge difference in my life. Rick has not only been my mentor, he was a friend that was always there for me. Not that many people would sacrifice their lunch break to mentor kids in need, so I’m very lucky to have Rick. “- Derek

Reflections on Being a Mentor

"Ten years ago, I joined the DSABC Mentor Program to be a friend to a child. This has been a wonderful journey for me and I would encourage anyone to give it a try. Mentoring is a balance of parent, teacher and friend. I have spent time with my mentee through her younger years, the teenage years and the young adult years. She has persevered through some hard times and I am so proud of her for who she is and who she has become. One hour a week is all that I have given of my time but she has given me so much more in return. We may not have agreed on all subjects but as a team we worked through it. I have watched her grow from a shy little girl to a lovely young lady. I will miss our weekly chats, our game playing and discussions for her future. We have gone full circle. I started out as her friend but now she has become my friend and I hope that will remain so for many years to come." - JoAnn (mentor, 10 years)

“Having been a mentor for 21 years with 4 mentees, I just want you to know what a pleasure it is to be with these young people every week.  They bring joy each time we are together.  It’s great to watch them grow over the years.” – Linda (mentor, 21 years)

“Mentoring has been a very uplifting and wonderful experience for me.  He has changed my life and helped me in ways I never thought possible, I hope I had one-tenth the impact on his life that he has had on mine.” – Carl (mentor, 7 years)