March 2017

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Recognize your outstanding volunteers with this award, presented by the governor at regional events in June. Submission information here.



Join us for the Give Back Iowa Challenge! April 1 - May 31
It’s simple, fun way for employers to track and celebrate the volunteering their employees do in the community.  Employers with the highest average number of volunteer hours per employee will be recognized with a visit from the Governor or Lieutenant Governor to their workplace. Register your organization here.

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Grant Strategies and Tips for Mentoring Nonprofits
March 9 , 2 pm
Peer Share Call
Register here


LaDonna Coy, Learning Chi, Inc will present two webinars on using digital technology. For registration information email

March 16 at 2:00 pm: Showing up on Social Media  will orient to communications methods of our time by taking a look back, a look around and a peak forward.  We’ll consider why to show up, where to show up and  how to show up on social media. In this webinar you’ll get a set of guidelines to help you  show up intentionally and consistently regardless of the platform or community.  
March 30 at 2:00 pm: Low and No-Cost Tools for Visual Communications   Social is visual. This session will focus on visual communications, why its important and offer some low and no-cost tools of support. From photos to video and apps to courses this webinar will get you started in the right direction to use the tools of our time to communicate and participate in amazing ways never before possible.  

Volunteer Iowa Program Professional Development:
April 10 Des Moines
April 12 Sioux City
April 18 Cedar Rapids

May 2 Cedar Rapids
May 16 Sioux City
May 23 Des Moines


Nike launched the EQUALITY campaign, highlighting mentoring which includes some key actions, including:

  • Nike released an EQUALITY campaign announcement this morning highlighting MENTOR as a partner and including a call to action to support the mentoring movement and become a mentor. 
  • At Nike’s NYC flagship store, the EQUALITY branding featuring MENTOR’s logo, statistics about mentoring and a call to action to become a mentor was unveiled this morning. Click here to see a photo gallery of the EQUALITY display (thanks to Madison Snelling for the photos).
  • All other Nike stores will launch similar displays beginning Thursday 2/16

If your program is not registered in the national database, interested volunteers from this campaign will not find you. Register here.

Monthly Mentor:
Grandma Delores, Fort Dodge Foster Grandparents

Grandma Delores recalls one of her favorite things, “seeing the light go on” for the children she teaches. “There was a little Chinese boy who couldn’t speak English, which is hard when you’re in Kindergarten. I worked with him and made flashcards, cut out pictures to put on there with the English words. He didn’t stay very long, but I hope I was able to help him.”

Another time, “One little girl had a hard time learning to tell time. We worked on it and worked on it and one day, she said, ‘I get it, this is easy!’” Grandma Delores laughs as she tells the story. Those bright spots, she says, make her feel good for sticking in there.

Read more here



March 7 Supporting Young People in the Wake of Violence, webinar, 2 pm

March 9 Grant Strategies and Tips, IMP Peer Share Call, 2 pm

March 16 Showing up on Social Media Webinar, 2 pm

March 30, Low and No-Cost Tools for Visual Communications, 2pm

Volunteer Iowa Program Professional Development:

April 10 Des Moines
April 12 Sioux City
April 18 Cedar Rapids

April 26 Excellence in Mentoring Awards 

Monthly Advocacy Tip: Email or mail your legislator to follow up with them on the connection(s) between their policy concerns and mentoring! Ask them about the policies they support in relation to mentoring. Sample letter found here.

Invite legislators to visit your program to see first-hand what you do. Introduce yourself and ask for support through raising awareness. A visit  will provide media attention to mentoring issues that will catch the eye of viewers and garner support and new mentors. Toolkits on reaching out to legislators or  local leaders here.

Monthly Marketing Tip: The In Real Life theme this month is Education--A Strong Foundation! Share stories on social media and your website on this theme. Some example social media posts are:
  • $306,906: Amount the government spends on support services over a lifetime of one person who does not graduate high school. Support a young person facing adversity and help them plan for their future by being a #mentorIRL
  • Students who meet regularly with mentors are 52% less like than peers to skip a day of school. Help students fight chronic absenteeism and stay in school by being a #mentorIRL
  • Youth facing adversity who have a mentor are more likely to hold a leadership position in a club, sports team, school council, or other group. Empower future leaders by becoming a #mentorIRL
  • Studies show that mentoring boosts the academic performance of students and increases their chances of completing high school. #mentorIRL
  • Mentees in longer mentoring relationships tend to have higher academic aspirations, participate more in sports and leadership positions, and volunteer more regularly than mentees with short-term mentors. #mentorIRL


Funding through the Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative is available here. Applications are due March 13th.
The OJJDP webinar on this funding is available here.



Predicting the Future of Mentoring Programs


National Mentoring Resource Center: New Resources


Interested in strengthening your mentoring program? New resources are available on the NMRC website. Our Review on Mentoring for First Generation Immigrant and Refugee Youth, The Wisdom of Age: A Handbook for Mentors, and the National Native American Mentoring Program Guide are just a few of the new resources you’ll find. Be sure to check out our most recent NMRC blog posts when you visit!



“What’s Your 50?” Recognition and Scholarship

Youth who have contributed 50 hours of service to their community are encouraged to apply here to be recognized for their service. Graduating high school youth can also apply for a $500 service scholarship in the same form.


Global Youth Service Day - Get your great work recognized

This year's Global Youth Service Day is April 21-23.  During the 30 days leading up to April 21, Community Youth Concepts (CYC) will be highlighting community service projects by young people from all over Iowa on the Facebook site: Iowa Service Learning and the website:

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