All volunteers are thoroughly screened through fingerprinting, background checks, reference checks, and online searches. Child safety is our number one priority! Volunteers are also interviewed in-depth to determine what skills and backgrounds they have that can address a child’s needs.
Volunteers engage in an orientation about BBBS Miami, as well as training on safe and effective mentoring relationships. Training is provided on an ongoing basis, as needed.
Youth and their families are evaluated to determine what needs the child has. This includes a combination of in-depth interviews with both the youth and the family, as well as a Risk Prevention Inventory. The assessment helps Program Specialists determine what skills and backgrounds a volunteer should have to address the child’s needs.
Program Specialists work with the volunteer, the youth, and the youth’s family to develop a Youth Outcome Development Plan, which includes mentoring goals for the child. Goals can include establishing community connections, improving academic performance, and lessening behavioral issues at school.
Program Specialists are thoroughly trained in providing support for effective mentoring relationships and child safety, including recognizing signs of child abuse and neglect. They also administer program evaluation tools to evaluate the impact of the mentoring relationship, allowing them to take corrective action if necessary.
Through ongoing assessment and support, Program Specialists continuously screen matches to ensure youth are making progress toward their Youth Outcome Development Plans. This includes regular check-ins and evaluations with both the volunteer and the youth’s family, as well as course-correction, if necessary.
Each match is paired with a Program Specialist to provide volunteers, children, and their families with support throughout the life of a match – and often throughout a lifetime – and create strong, lasting relationships with our Littles, their families, and our Bigs.