Kids Friends Mentoring Program
Kids Friends is an innovative program which uses volunteers from the community to assist children from disadvantaged or socially isolated backgrounds by taking a long-term active role in their lives.
Kids Friends links children from 6 to 16 years to an adult mentor who takes the child out for a few hours every week for a recreational activity.
By offering an adult as mentor, the Kids Friends programs aim to raise a child’s self-esteem and general quality of life through regular outings, sports and leisure activities. This will help them to develop life, literacy and numeracy skills, improve social and relationship abilities and provide time out for them and their family.
Parents are provided with written guidelines explaining the conditions and expectations of the program.
Training and support
Kids Friends volunteers can obtain further information by completing and submitting the Kids Friends enquiry form
If they wish to proceed, they will take part in a number of interviews at home and at the Centre to assess their skills, family dynamics and suitability to the program and to a particular child.
Barnardos supports its volunteer carers with intensive training, support and regular information sessions. Contact is maintained every week initially, and then fortnightly and later monthly once a firm routine and good relationship between child and mentor are established.
To safeguard the security of children in the program, police and reference checks of volunteers are also conducted.