Mentoring What is the aim of Mentoring? Mind BLMK's goal-orientated mentoring service is well-established throughout the area, in Bedford Borough, Central Bedfordshire and Luton. In Milton Keynes, we offer mentoring as part of our wellbeing service. For information about the Milton Keynes mentoring service, click here. Examples of goals that can be worked towards are: Taking part in physical activity Using public transport Building a social circle Looking for work/voluntary work. The service aims to: Enhance quality of life and aid recovery by providing goal-orientated support on a 1:1 basis Support individuals to set and achieve goals, thus building self-confidence and improving mental wellbeing Help individuals build and maintain relationships Support individuals to engage in physical activity. About Mind's Mentors Mentors are volunteers trained by Mind BLMK to support you to create an action plan to work towards your goal/s identified at your intial meeting. Volunteer mentors are selected for their interpersonal and communication skills. They receive formal training for their role which is certified by the Open College Network. Mentors are not counsellors but can provide a means of support with setting goals and achieving them. How Mentoring Works A mentoring relationship is founded upon trust, mutual respect and confidentiality. It enshrines the value of Mind BLMK in as much as it aims to meet individual needs and promote recovery, wellbeing and independence. Mentors meet with their mentees at one of our venues or in a public place for 1-2 hours at a time, normally once a week for a period of up to 12 weeks. Goals for these meetings are discussed with the Mentor Lead. Individuals will be referred to the mentoring service through the referrals procedure. They will then be contacted by the mentor lead to discuss their goal/s and the level of support required. Mind will assess individuals for suitability for mentoring service and may make a decision not to offer mentoring if deemed inappropriate. Mind will match the individual with a volunteer mentor and arrange an introductory meeting. Once the volunteer mentor is introduced to the mentee and the goals are discussed, the mentoring relationship commences. For mentoring to be successful the individual must be willing to make changes to work towards his/her goal. The decision whether to take up Mind's offer of support lies with the person referred. What to Expect from a Mentor The mentor will: Support you to create an action plan to work towards your goals/s Support and encourage you to consider how to handle difficult situations Listen to your concerns and ask questions so that you can rationalise solutions Challenge your pre-conceptions so that they do not stand in the way of your progress Provide support and encouragement when the going gets tough Be non-judgemental. Testimonial "I found my mentoring service to be a very useful experience and felt that it has contributed greatly to my continuing improvement. My mentor was a great match and I'pleased to have had the opportunity to meet with him.” How to access the Mentor service You can access Mind BLMK's Services through a range of agencies including, Health Services, Social Services and through your GP. You can also fill in an 'Access to Services' form (click here to access the online form). You can also ring 0300 330 0648 and select option 1 to discuss options further. If you are currently accessing our services, please tell the Locality Lead for your area that you would like to be mentored and the process can start. Criteria for referral: Resident in Bedfordshire or Luton Primary diagnosis of mental health problem Aged 18 and over No prolonged history of violence Not in need of nursing or personal care Personal circumstances must allow the individual to be able to focus on working towards goals.