2018 Youth Mentoring Summit: Group work results

It has been one month since the 2018 Sangamon County Youth Mentoring Summit, and the Continuum of Learning team has been hard at work reviewing the results of the Summit’s group activity and identifying the top 5 types of outcomes, activities, and inputs that attendees expressed need to be part of our local mentoring movement.

For those who need a refresher, during the final activity at this year’s Youth Mentoring Summit attendees gathered in multi-disciplinary groups of 5-8 people and worked collaboratively to articulate the outcomes they and their staff strive for (What do we want for our youth as a result of their having been mentored?), the activities that would help achieve those outcomes, and the resources/inputs needed to make those activities happen.  Below are the commonly-identified themes in each of those categories.


Outcome Types:

Remember that outcomes are specific and measurable.  These are just the types of outcomes that Summit participants expressed are important to their programs:

  • Academic improvement
  • Increased participation in career and technical education opportunities
  • Improved school retention, attendance, and graduation rates
  • Delinquency prevention and support for justice-involved youth
  • Improved social-emotional learning and skills


  • Mentor training
  • Evidence-based curriculum and mentoring practice
  • Academic-focused programs
  • Mentees’ exposure to new experiences (cultural and career-related)
  • Social-emotional skill-building for mentees


  • Funding
  • People (committed mentors and mentees, paid mentoring program staff, school staff)
  • Partnerships (Fraternal organizations, civic organizations, school districts, faith community)
  • Knowledge of and access to mutually-reinforcing community programs (jobs/internships, tutoring opportunities, basic needs support)
  • Family/student support team engagement



We’ve identified some of the results we all aspire to achieve for our youth being mentored.  Now what?  Here are 3 ways these commonly expressed outcomes, activities, and inputs can be used:

1. PROGRAM PLANNING: As you conduct planning for your mentoring program, discuss with your team: Are our inputs and activities likely to get us to our desired outcomes?  What does research say will help us achieve our outcomes?  If you need help, you can check out some research summaries, apply for technical assistance, or contact the Continuum of Learning.  Your outcomes may be the same or different from the ones identified above, but make sure every opportunity you pursue drives towards the end results you want for the youth participating in your program.

2. PARTNERSHIPS: As you form partnerships with other organizations in Sangamon County to support your mentoring efforts, ensure that your shared activities and the inputs you’re giving/receiving speak directly to one or more of your desired outcomes.  Use the commonly identified outcome types listed above as a starting point– which of these (or others) do you share with your prospective partners?

3. CONTINUUM OF LEARNING: The Sangamon County Continuum of Learning will continue to support local mentoring programs in aligning with evidence-based best practice and to increase the reach of high-impact mentoring models.  Now, the CoL will also keep these group work results in mind as local priorities.  If there is a resource that has helped your program use evidence-based best practice, let us know and we’ll share your story and that resource with the community. Subscribe to the Sangamon Success newsletter to learn about opportunities as they arise.





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The Sangamon County Youth Mentoring Summit is hosted by the Sangamon County Continuum of Learning, which oversees implementation of the Sangamon Success report.  The report consists of 25 recommendations to support local non-profits and service providers in leveraging data and high-quality research to maximize their positive impact on the less-advantaged members of the Sangamon County community.  Learn more.

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