Dooley Corporation Coaching Program
Mentoring, at its core, guarantees young people that there is someone who cares about them, assures them they are not alone in dealing with day-to-day challenges, and makes them feel like they matter. Research confirms that quality mentoring relationships have powerful positive effects on young people in a variety of personal, academic, and professional situations. Mentoring connects a young person to personal growth and development, and social and economic opportunity. Yet one in three young people will grow up without this critical asset. Young adults who were at risk for falling off track but had a mentor are:
55% more likely to enroll in college
78% more likely to volunteer regularly
90% are interested in becoming a mentor
130% more likely to hold leadership positions
Mentoring Effects on Education
Mentoring has significant positive effects on two early warning indicators that a student may be falling off track:
High levels of absenteeism (Kennelly & Monrad, 2007)
Students who meet regularly with their mentors are 52% less likely than their peers to skip a day of school and 37% less likely to skip a class (Public/Private Ventures study of Big Brothers Big Sisters)
Recurring behavior problems (Thurlow, Sinclair & Johnson, 2002)
Young adults who face an opportunity gap but have a mentor are 55% more likely to be enrolled in college than those who did not have a mentor. (The Mentoring Effect, 2014)
In addition to better school attendance and a better chance of going on to higher education, mentored youth keep better attitudes towards school. (The Role of Risk, 2013)
Mentoring Effects on Daily Life
By being a consistent adult presence in a young person’s life mentors can offer advice, share life their experiences, and help a young person navigate challenges.
Youth who meet regularly with their mentors are:
46% less likely than their peers to start using illegal drugs and 27% less likely to start drinking. (Public/Private Ventures student of Big Brothers Big sisters)
Young adults who face an opportunity gap but have a mentor are 81% more likely to participate regularly in sports or extracurricular activities than those who do not. (The Mentoring Effect, 2014)
Finally, the study showed that the strongest benefit from mentoring, and most consistent across risk groups, was a reduction in depressive symptoms — particularly noteworthy given that almost one in four youth reported worrisome levels of these symptoms at baseline. (The Role of Risk, 2013) Mentoring promotes positive social attitudes and relationships. Mentored youth tend to trust their parents more and communicate better with them. (The Role of Risk, 2013)
Description Of Intervention
The Dooley Corporation Coaching Program matches youths ages 5-18, with coaches predominantly from low-income, single parent households, foster youth, and at risk students. Identified areas that the Program targets for successful intervention are: mental health, social emotional, education, substance abuse, relationships, reproductive health, and behavior problems. It is critical to meet the student where they are and not push them into services they are not ready for or open to receiving; such as, therapy. Relationships are built on trust, rapport building, and accessing the student’s strengths such as sports. One of the most important components of our program is the assigned Parent and Student Engagement Specialist who works closely with the family and school team of the mentee’s when appropriate. The Specialist will help the parent regain control of the family unit, and work on identifying where the breakdown of the family system needs to be strengthened. The Specialist will also work with the school team when absenteeism is an identified area of concern.
What We Do
Addiction and defiance oftentimes stunts the normal developmental patterns of growth of a troubled student. Instead of learning how to care for themselves and for the environment around them, their lives are consumed with how to continue their addictive behavior. Adolescence is meant to be a period of increased independence, competency, and personal responsibility as teens prepare to enter adulthood.
A foundational life skill for every teen is to learn the benefits and practices of fitness and nutrition. Teens that are using drugs or alcohol are damaging their bodies and are not particularly motivated to participate in regular exercise. By participating in our teen program and physical fitness regimen, students begin to learn how to structure their time to invest in physical fitness instead of their current maladaptive behaviors. As they begin to see the physical benefits of fitness, our troubled students are able to build self-esteem while learning positive habits that can last a lifetime. The recreational therapy portion focuses on the student’s development as they are exposed to a variety of physically and emotionally challenging experiences. We utilize these experiences to help the student develop his or her character, life skills, communication skills, healthy relationship building abilities, and their understanding of how to respect and respond to authority. Our students also learn the value of teamwork, perseverance, and hard work while experiencing success together as a team. Through our mentor program, we take every opportunity to demonstrate the life lessons that can be found in every life experience…both good and bad.
Learning basic work skills is also an important part of the development of any student. One way that we help to prepare our students for future jobs is to invest in volunteerism within the community. Our students are able to learn skills for future employment while helping local charities and churches at the same time. These activities incorporated into our student program range from helping with logistics to serving at banquets or fundraisers. By focusing on helping others, learning professionalism, and serving, our students begin to realize their potential to make a positive difference in the world around them while gaining beneficial work skills.
Workplace mentoring programs allow students to visit real workplaces and learn from one-to-one relationships with successful professionals. Bigs in workplace mentoring programs get the unique chance to give back to their community during their busy workdays. If you'd like to start a workplace mentoring program at your workplace, or if you have questions about how to get more involved, contact The Dooley Corporation.