Encouraging mentoring is one more way OCFS can further its mission of improving the wellbeing of children and families. The New York State Mentoring Program is a pathway that leads children to a successful future, a program guided by an advisory board and its chairwoman, Matilda Raffa Cuomo, the governor’s mother.
To accompany the launch of the New York State Mentoring Program, the Governor also announced the launch of a website to provide information about available services and mentoring models, in addition to resources for volunteers interested in mentoring children in their communities.
The school-based mentoring program gives at-risk students the support they need to succeed in school and in life. When the late Governor Mario Cuomo established the nation’s first school-based one-to-one mentoring program in 1987, it was chaired by Mrs. Cuomo and became a highly successful program that screened and trained volunteers, then matched them to children in their communities as a way to encourage at-risk youth to stay in school and earn a diploma. By 1995, it had successfully connected close to 2,000 of New York’s neediest students to highly-trained mentors to help them succeed in school and graduate.
Volunteers are encouraged to apply to become a mentor in their community by filling out an application.