Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is mentoring?
A: National Mentoring Partnership defines mentoring as a development strategy for a youth’s successful path to adulthood. In a structured mentoring program, a supportive individual works with a youth to build a relationship by offering guidance, support, and encouragement to cultivate the youth’s positive and healthy development. Often, mentoring programs are designed around specific goals, such as academic achievement, career preparation, and behavior modification. A mentor echoes the positive values and cultural heritage parents and guardians are teaching. A mentor is part of a team of caring adults.

Q: What is the Be a Mentor Des Moines Campaign?
A: The Des Moines Be a Mentor Campaign was launched in January of 2015 to increase the quality and quantity of adult mentors for the youth in our community. As the need to support youth continues to increase, the Des Moines mentoring programs recognize the importance of engaging them with positive role models. All youth mentoring programs certified through Iowa Mentoring Partnership have come together with their passion and devotion to serving youth to make the campaign a success. Our goal is to enhance the outreach and impact of high-quality youth mentors within the community. By working together, so much more can be done, a bigger difference can be made, and we can improve our efforts to give every child who matters someone who matters.

Q: What makes a good mentor?
A: Anyone!  You!  Being a mentor does not mean you’re perfect.  In fact, there are many ways in which we have struggled in our lives and have been fortunate enough to have a trusting adult help us overcome.  That is exactly what you can be for a child who does not have that same opportunity.  Being a mentor means you’re a friend,  a motivator, a leader, a role model, a guide.

Q: Who do potential mentors serve?
A: Mentors, on behalf of Be a Mentor Des Moines, will be mentoring youth in our community.  These youth ages range from elementary to high school.  With the helpful quiz located on our website, you’ll be able to find your perfect fit, tailored to your strengths and preferences.

Q: What does it mean for a mentoring program to be certified by Iowa Mentoring Partnership?
A: By volunteering under a mentoring program certified through Iowa Mentoring Partnership, mentors can be assured the program which they are mentoring for is following elements of effective mentoring and have written, submitted, and are practicing their volunteer policies and risk management plan.  Iowa Mentoring Partnership offers continued support, best practices, and program development for the mentoring programs.

Q: Who are the certified programs involved?
A: The youth certified mentoring programs of central Iowa who are working together on this campaign include:

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa
Community Youth Concepts
Everybody Wins! Iowa
Johnston Youth Mentoring Program
Mentor Iowa
Orchard Place
Q: How can I get involved?
A: Go online to and fill out your contact information.  Here, you will be able to take a quiz and let us help you find your perfect fit.  Someone will then be reaching out to you to follow-up.  You can also email or contact Nicole Moritz at 515.243.4292.