AFKA PROVINCIAL MENTORSHIP PROGRAM

The AFKA Provincial Mentorship Program believes in foster and kinship caregivers. Through collaboration, training, mentoring and non-threatening support, families who care for children will feel empowered and able to succesfully self-advocate. In a safe environment, foster and kinship caregivers will be supported to develop confidence, motivation and additional skills as caregivers. It is through this positive self-growth that we, as individuals, can have a positive impact on the lives of others.

We are offering this program to all regions throughout Alberta, with the exception of the Calgary Region, where the Calgary and District Foster Parents Association offers a regional Mentorship Program; caregivers/support workers within this region should contact Nancy Clayden at nancy@fostercalgary.com for more information.

SUPPORT OPTIONS

  • LONG-TERM SUPPORT
    • Designed for new foster and kinship caregivers in Alberta; although, can be accessed by other caregivers, as requested.
    • Provide consistent, one-year support with a designated mentor
    • New foster and kinship caregivers will be matched with an approved mentor within their own program and region

  • SHORT-TERM SUPPORT
    • For all foster and kinship caregivers in Alberta
    • Foster and kinship caregivers will be temporarily matched with an approved mentor within their own program and region
    • Provide temporary support with a designated mentor as situations arise

Mentor Characteristics

To ensure success within the Provincial Mentorship Program, the following characteristics are looked for in mentors:

  • Foster Mentor & Kinship Mentor – Experience and approval of the direct worker/supervisor of this mentor.
  • Has unique knowledge and experience to share with an individual in need of support
  • Willing and eager to provide support to other foster or kinship caregivers
  • Is approved by the foster/kinship support worker as an appropriate person to provide effective support and has a good working relationship with their department/agency 
  • Eager to learn
  • Desire to help
  • Able and willing to work as a team player
  • Patient
  • Nonjudgmental
  • Positive role model
  • Acts with courtesy and respect
  • Good listener
  • Inspiring and Motivating
  • Respects differences among people or groups from various backgrounds
  • Effective verbal and non-verbal communication skills

These characteristics can be built upon through additional training, support through the Provincial Mentorship Program, and through networking with like-minded individuals.

Mentee Characteristics

To increase success within the Provincial Mentorship Program, the following characteristics are desirable in mentees:

  • Seeking the extra support for guidance in navigating various aspects of the Child Intervention System
  • Eager to learn
  • Applies and practices what he/she learns
  • Patient
  • Acts with courtesy and respect
  • Team player
  • Sets goals
  • Accepts personal responsibility

 

 

 

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Program Application Process

MENTEE:

  • Foster or kinship caregivers who apply directly to the program will be matched with a mentor in confidence; a referral from the caregiver’s Foster/Kinship Care Support Worker is helpful in learning more about how we can best support the applicant.

MENTOR:

  • Foster/Kinship caregivers wanting to provide support to other caregivers, and match the criteria as outlined above, can submit a Mentor Application Form directly to the program.
  • Mentor Applications are reviewed by Provincial Mentorship Program staff and go through an approval process with the support of the potential mentor’s Foster/Kinship Care Support Worker
  • If a Mentor Application is not supported by the potential mentor’s Foster/Kinship Care Support Worker, recommendations are given for areas that need improvement in order to support the application in the future. Applications will be revisited upon request from the potential Mentor.

Referral Process

  • Foster/Kinship Care Support Workers suggest referral forms to potential mentor and mentee candidates who fulfill the necessary qualifications
  • If the potential mentor or mentee is interested, a referral can be submitted
  • Mentor referral forms serve to assess a mentor’s background, skills, and experiences
  • Mentee referral forms allow a mentee to request further guidance in a range of areas that an experienced mentor typically encounters
  • Referrals are submitted directly to the Provincial Mentorship Program by the Foster/Kinship Care Support Worker