All youth who participate in YRAP are matched with a youth mentor who spends time with them and supports them through their court involvement and consequences. This is an essential part of YRAP because it builds long-term relationships founded on trust while also offering a positive role model who is close in age.
A mentor is a member who works one-on-one with a young person who is in the program.
The mentor’s role can vary case-by-case, but they are generally someone who is of a similar age and is a support and a positive influence. The mentor’s contact with the young person can range from just checking in every once in awhile to helping out with finding school, work, or community service hours, and being a close support/advocate for them.
In some sense, YRAP is a group of expert, non-experts. We have our own training, support structure and standards of conduct, but all-in-all we’re just people who are interested in the well-being of others and of the community. We are also able to be there as nonjudgmental supports. New mentors are given an interview and orientation, and have a chance to meet other mentors and get an idea of what to expect before mentoring.