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Youth Mentorship Program


The African Collaborative Network Mentorship Program is designed to empower African immigrant and refugee youth living in West Michigan by connecting them with successful African immigrant and refugee mentors. The program aims to provide guidance, support, and opportunities for personal and professional growth, helping mentees navigate the challenges of adapting to life in a new country while fostering a sense of community and cultural identity.

Mentorship Timeline:


The mentorship program will run for a minimum of one year, with the option for extension based on the mentor-mentee relationship's progress and mutual agreement. The timeline includes the following phases:

Mentorship Timeline

Mentorship Roles

01 Matching (March -April)

March 2024:

  • Application and selection of mentors and mentees.

  • Initial orientation and training for both mentors and mentees.

  • Pairing based on shared interests, goals, and lived experiences.

03 Skill Development and Support (July - December)

  • Focusing on mentee's personal, academic, and career development.

  • Providing guidance on education, career paths, and skill-building.

  • Addressing specific challenges related to integration and cultural adaptation.

02 Relationship Building (May - July 2024)

  • Regular meetings (bi-weekly or monthly) between mentors and mentees.

  • Establishing rapport, trust, and clear communication.

  • Setting short-term and long-term goals for the mentorship.

04 Community Engagement (January - March 2025

  • Encouraging mentees to become involved in local African communities.

  • Promoting cultural awareness and identity.

  • Mentees share their experiences with the broader African Collaborative Network community.

Roles and Requirements:

Mentor Requirements:

1. Lived Experience:


Mentors must have personal experience as African immigrants or refugees and be willing to share their experiences.

2. Commitment:


Mentors should commit to at least one year of active mentorship, with regular meetings and support for mentees.



3. Empathy and Patience:


Mentors should be empathetic, patient, and willing to listen and provide guidance without judgment.



4. Role Model:


Mentors should serve as positive role models for mentees, demonstrating success in various aspects of life.



5. Availability:


Mentors should be available for both scheduled and emergency meetings when needed.

Mentee Requirements:

1. Willingness to Learn:


Mentees should be motivated and open to learning, personal growth, and goal-setting.

2. Respectful Attitude:


Mentees should respect their mentors and the mentorship process, actively engaging in the relationship.

3. Regular Participation:


Mentees should commit to regular meetings with their mentors and actively seek guidance.

4. Goal Setting:


Mentees should be prepared to set clear short-term and long-term goals for personal and academic development.

"Ubuntu: I am because we are."
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