In addition to custom Technical Assistance projects, the Institute produces a variety of resources for mentoring programs. These resources include webinars, live trainings, and other educational offerings for staff of mentoring programs.  The Institute’s premier educational offering is the webinar series Fostering Progress, offered 4-6 times per year. Our expert consultants are also featured at conferences, partner events, and other events throughout the year.

The resources for mentoring programs below cover some of the most popular topics requested by our community. Looking for something else? Request no-cost support for your organization!

Mentoring Transition Aged Youth (TAY): A Collaborative Learning Exchange

This Fostering Progress event explores how mentoring programs can learn together with Transition Age Youth how to best support young people’s independent living and life goals. Transition Age Youth are young people just over age 18 who are transitioning to adulthood or out of state systems, such as foster care. The session includes discussion of program design, youth voice and continuous improvement, community partnership, and lessons learned and provides new insights on how to develop multi-faceted programming to support and empower TAY mentees.

Getting Started with Policy Advocacy & Lived Experience – Fostering Progress

Programs know that governmental financial resources can aid in delivering mentoring programs, and that there are many reforms that should be made to the foster care system, yet participating in policy advocacy work can feel intimidating and daunting. In this session, you’ll learn practical tips to get started engaging the voice of youth and young adults with lived experience in policy advocacy work. You’ll also hear from SLM’s new Lived Experience Fellow, Jarrett Harper, a seasoned advocate with lived expertise, and examples of how SLM has started engaging in policy work. Viewers will also learn about a timely piece of proposed legislation, H.R. 3083 The Foster Youth Mentoring Act.

Mentoring & Mental Health – Fostering Progress

Despite the growing prevalence of mental health needs in today’s world, mental health education, support, and resources are still greatly needed. Youth impacted by foster care face additional barriers to continuity of care and stressors due to disrupted placements, separation from important relationships, and constant change. When it comes to mentoring and mental health, it is important for mentors and mentoring organizations to strengthen our understanding of mental health and identify the roles that we play to be of support to young people. In this session, we discuss mental health training recommendations for mentors, confidentiality, and explore unique considerations for supporting youth impacted by foster care and mental health.

Please download webinar resources, here.

Mentor Screening – Fostering Progress

In this webinar, we will briefly review the key components of the Elements of Effective Practices for Mentoring Standard 2: Screening. With this foundation in place, we will explore and discuss how to ensure alignment between your program’s screening and training processes. We’ll walk through SLM’s current interview tool, review sample questions, and assess how using training scenarios in the interview stage can help to understand how a candidate would approach the mentoring role.

Navigating Boundaries

Navigating Boundaries – Fostering Progress

Developing awareness of boundaries for ourselves and others, along with strengthening language and tools to understand boundaries can support positive identity development, trust in relationships, and support safety. In this workshop, we will explore how we think about, talk about, and support boundary setting in mentoring relationships with a specific focus on trauma-informed boundary setting to support youth impacted by foster care. We will also explore and discuss how programs can strengthen boundaries in mentor screening, training, and monitoring.

Mentor Training – Fostering Progress

Many mentoring programs struggle with how best to screen and train mentors in ways that get to know potential volunteers, teach necessary skills and ensure that mentors’ values are aligned with programmatic values. In this session, we discuss how mentoring programs are assessing mentors’ learning and capacity to change and how mentor screening and training influences ongoing match support.

Difficult Conversations – Fostering Progress

There are difficult conversations that are common to all mentoring programs including enforcing a program policy, delivering corrective feedback to a mentee or mentor, and holding a boundary. In this session, we’ll discuss the tools and procedures your program can develop to navigate difficult conversations that also support youth impacted by foster care. This can benefit everyone involved, particularly when it comes to reducing trauma and increasing emotional safety.

Match Closure

Match Closure – Fostering Progress

Mentoring programs spend a lot of effort to help build healthy relationships. But what about ending them? In this session of Fostering Progress, our webinar series for mentoring programs, we explore match closure as a critical consideration when mentoring programs serve youth in foster care.

Mentoring young adults: How mentoring organizations can approach responding to crises in a sustainable, responsible and empowering way

In this Collaborative Mentoring Webinar Series session, the Silver Lining Institute joins MENTOR National to share how mentoring programs can respond to crises in an empowering way.

Incorporating a Strengths-Based Mindset into Mentor Training and Program Policies

In this Collaborative Mentoring Webinar Series session, the Silver Lining Institute joins MENTOR National to share how strengths-based mindsets can best support your mentors and mentees.

Stock photo of adult man and teenage boy

Intro to Mentoring Youth in Foster Care

This 101-level course offers a broad introduction to mentoring youth who live in the foster care system and how to help them thrive in a mentoring relationship. (Note: If you’re unable to finish the training in one sitting, you may have to clear your browser cache in order to access the link again.)