Mentoring is a purposeful, effective and rewarding way to have a direct and lasting impact on a child’s life. Children and teens referred to Y mentoring programs have been identified by parents/guardians, school counselors and other plugged-in adults as needing the steady, predictable presence of a caring responsible adult in their lives. There are many ways to participate as a volunteer mentor at the Y. We invite you to get involved. 

Multiple ways to engage as a mentor

  • One-to-one mentoring in the community or at a Y site
  • Group mentoring at a Y site
  • Workplace mentoring through your employer, either at your place of work or a nearby school

All Y mentoring programs match adult volunteers to young people ages 6-18. We provide training and a complimentary Y membership for you and your mentee so you can participate in the many fun and enriching opportunities at the Y. 

All mentors must be age 21 or older and pass a background check.


Getting Started

Browse our various mentoring programs below. If you are interested in volunteering as an adult Y mentor, or know a child you’d like to refer to one of our programs, please contact us at mentoring@ymaryland.org. Thank you for getting involved!

ONE-TO-ONE MENTORING

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters at the Y: One-to-one supportive mentoring in the community or at a Y site

    A one-to-one, professionally supported mentoring program for youth ages 6-17 designed to provide consistent, caring positive role modeling and supportive guidance. Mentoring takes place based on the individual mentor/mentee desired schedule in a Y or around the community and can continue for a year or longer. Mentor/mentee matches meet regularly to engage in healthy positive activities (such as sports, board games, arts & crafts) which lead to trusting, long term relationships which help build confidence and self-esteem.
     
  • Reach & Rise: One-to-one prescriptive mentoring at a Y Site

    A year long, professionally supported mentoring program for youth ages 6-17. Mentors work closely with a case worker to assist with addressing clearly identified needs and objectives. Matches meet two hours a week at a Y Center to participate in Y activities like open swim, rock wall and open gym, sit and talk, help with homework, and more.
     

GROUP MENTORING

  • Reach & Rise: A 12-week program for youth ages 8-15.

    Two volunteer mentors are paired with six youth mentees. Volunteers provide group mentoring services at a Y and create safe, healthy and meaningful relationships within the group. This program is ideal for adult mentors who may prefer volunteering with a spouse, partner or friend.
     
  • Badges for Baseball: A 13-week program for youth ages 10-14.

    Youth meet once a week in the spring and fall at Y centers. Volunteer law enforcement officers and other community volunteers use sports to break down barriers, create a positive group dynamic and open up lines of communication.
     

WORKPLACE MENTORING

We offer multiple ways your employees can easily volunteer and enjoy the rewards that come with helping others.

  • Workplace Mentoring: Mentors from corporate partners host teens looking to build their future, one day each month. Students build a strong personal relationship, and develop critical job skills over the course of a two- to four-year commitment.
     
  • Beyond School Walls: Corporate partners host elementary or middle school students twice a month, for 90 minutes each visit. Students gain a mentor and an early introduction into the workplace environment.
     
  • Bigs in School: Mentors from corporate partners travel to a nearby elementary/middle school or community center where they spend an hour each week with their mentee participating in interactive and enriching activities over lunch.