MMVLLEN Mentor E- News Aug/Sept
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August/September 2016
Dear Mentors,

We hope you have had some great sessions with your mentees over the last two months. Yes, it’s been two months already! The year is certainly flying by.

This August/September newsletter will focus on how to engage with your mentee, when life is just a little too busy. We hope you find this topic helpful as we know mentors and mentees can find it difficult to find the time to catch up, particularly during this time. Like the previous newsletters, you will also hear about volunteer program updates, what is happening in the region and job and training information.

We hope you enjoy reading this newsletter and find some helpful hints within. 





New Mentors - joining the team
We have recruited and trained our second round of mentors for the year. They will commence the mentoring program this month and begin the mentoring journey which you are on! We are very excited to have more wonderful mentors join us.

Debrief Session - rescheduled
Unfortunately due to low attendance we had to cancel our first mentor debrief session planned for August. Stay tuned for the next debrief session planned for November. Please prioritise this event as it will not only be a great time to touch base with each other as a group, but learn from each others' experiences.  

Group Work Activities - team up
Do you feel isolated working with your mentee? Or do you have a great idea for an activity that other mentees may benefit from, too? Remember, you can team up with other mentors to come up with activities for your mentees. You may want to take a bunch of mentees to an education provider or you have a great colleague that may be suited as motivational speaker...there are many opportunities to be working together. You could start a conversation via WhatsApp.

Project Manager - on leave
Anna Lemcke will  be on leave between October and January. While Anna is away the wonderful Jane Kovacs will be supporting Ruth with the day-to-day matters of our mentor program. Jane brings a wealth of knowledge to the team, so make sure you pick her brain, if you need to. Email:



Maintaining relationships during busy times can be quite challenging. Before a busy time comes up (if predictable like exams, busy work schedule, business trip, family times) discuss with your mentee ways that you could keep in contact. Stick to the plan that you have developed together (Remember: broken commitments can have negative effects).
Here are some straight forward tips and hints to keep your relationship on track (adapted from Australian Youth Mentoring Network):
  • Both undertake a project activity (e.g. writing and reviewing a cover letter, job search, setting up LinkedIn account etc.) that you can discuss over regular communication.
  • SMS (text): A quick text message can keep you connected and the right words can develop your established rapport. For example, during exam time be aware of your mentees exam timetable and send a couple of text messages at important times during the period. For example “1 down 3 to go. Hang in there”, “Last exam, all the best”. Or, text them after a a job interview or any other important moment in their life.
  • Email: Send an email or a series of emails, depending on the length of the personal contact break. This type of communication may provide an opportunity for your mentee to open up a bit more than they would do in person. Be sure to provide them information about what is happening with you, whilst also asking questions about them. Use your established email address.
  • Telephone calls: Schedule calls during your regular meeting time, if both parties are available. Alternatively, arrange convenient times and topics to discuss on a fortnightly basis. 
  • Send a card: An appropriate card for the season or occasion, such as Christmas, Easter, birthday or a significant time of year for your mentee. Posting a card to help them celebrate is a special way to show your mentee that you are thinking of them. An e-card may also be useful. 
  • Postcards: If you are away why not pop a postcard in the post? It is always a welcome surprise to receive mail, plus your contact while on holiday will demonstrate the importance you place on your relationship with your mentee. Alternatively, provide your mentee with some stamped self addressed postcards, which they can send throughout the break.
Have some ground rules in place, so that both parties are clear about the communication, for example, list the ways that communication will take place (email, letter) if sending emails set a reply time, if working on a job application decide on the length each person should add and within a time frame. 

Keep your program coordinator updated as to your plans and most importantly ensure that any contact, communication or meeting complies with program policies.

We also have heaps of activity ideas and resources, so don't be shy to get in contact with us.



Victorian Government - Youth Policy

Building Stronger Youth Engagement in Victoria
To download Youth Policy
click here

Refugee and asylum seeker settlement in Victoria - FAQs
An fact sheet with Frequently Asked Questions about refugee and asylum seeker settlement by DHHS developed in July 2016. Click here

MindSpot Clinic - University of New South Wales - free online mental health course
The MindSpot Clinic is a free service for Australian adults who are experiencing difficulties with anxiety, stress, depression and low mood. An online screening assessment and an 8 week treatment course are available.
More info:

JULY 2016 


VUIT Pre-apprenticeships courses - campus tours
When:  every Wednesday 1pm
Pre-book the tour at: sunshine-campus-trades-facilities-tour 
click here for the flier

WCIG - Skills for Education and Employment program (SEE)
See is a numeracy and literacy youth program in Ascot Vale.
Rolling intake. Call 9689 3437

JobCraft - entry level positions
An online resource for exclusive entry-level positions and education opportunities for young people.

Kangan Institute - Next Step
Next Step is a free program for 15-24 year olds. It offers advice on pathway options, career planning and referrals to relevant services.
For more info:
click here for website or contact Sandra Girgis
Being a mentor bridges the privilege gap
Copyright © 2016 Maribyrnong and Moonee Valley LLEN, All rights reserved.

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