ARC's program design and development services are informed by three decades of experience and leadership in mentoring. We can help you create a new program, cultivate best practices in an existing one, or apply lessons from an evaluation. We also can help you solve problems related to processes and infrastructure, improve your fundraising and public relations, or assist the formation of school-based and other mentoring models. We offer knowledgeable and practical assistance with making, supervising, and retaining strong matches.
How can we help you?
We support every aspect of design and development in successful mentoring programs:
ARC can show you how to make the most of traditional sources of volunteers and tap into special populations (e.g., elders, couples, etc.). We can also help you increase the number of youth you serve by showing you how to nurture partnerships with schools and other organizations. We strongly encourage and support rigorous screening of volunteers through interviews, background checks, and use of psychological profiles where necessary.
Youth benefit most from long-term matches and may even be harmed by matches that end prematurely1. ARC provides proven guidelines and protocols that can help you create the type of compatible matches that are most likely to succeed. We also provide guidance for the type of training that can prepare youth and adults to thrive together.
Our survey measures of match relationship quality can help you ensure that matches receive appropriate supervision and support. Hailed by Dr. David DuBois (co-editor, Handbook of Youth Mentoring) as "a truly groundbreaking contribution to the field of youth mentoring," these instruments help experienced staff test their impressions of a match and uncover potential problems that may not be readily apparent. They can also help structure and standardize supervision for less experienced staff.
Hiring and retaining capable staff is a major challenge to any mentoring program. ARC understands how to identify and attract strong candidates, how to make the most of administrative volunteers, and how to structure an office to enhance efficiency. We can provide tools and insight to help you mitigate staff turnover, keep operating costs low, and boost morale. We can also develop match tracking software to streamline and automate administrative tasks.
To make quality mentoring widely accessible, programs must create convenient and practical ways for youth and volunteers to engage. ARC can help you engage youth and adults with alternatives such as site-based programming when traditional community-based mentoring is not a viable option. Pathways into manageable commitments such as these can engage participants who might not otherwise get involved. We can also help you assess your resources and design mentoring models to make the most of them (e.g., high school, couples, or elders mentoring).
Mentoring programs can benefit immeasurably from the goodwill of the community, and ARC can help you develop the outreach to tap it. We can show you how to recruit local businesses to help matches share fun and affordable experiences. We can help you develop relationships with local media that not only advertise your program but give potential business partners further reason to become involved. And we can help you organize the type of special events that will raise your program's public profile while offering matches a structured way to get to know each other.
Fundraising is both the bane and the lifeblood of your mentoring program, a difficult and ongoing task that must be done well for the program to thrive. ARC can help you do it more efficiently, allowing you to reduce the burden on your staff and focus resources where they should be--on the matches. We will help you conduct effective fundraising events, attract individual donors, and apply for large and small grants. We will help you finance and focus on making strong matches that last.
1 Grossman, J.B. & Rhodes, J.E. (2002). The Test of Time: Predictors and Effects of Duration in Youth Mentoring Relationships. American Journal of Community Psychology, Vol. 30, No. 2.