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Corporate Mentors - A Volunteer "Salvo"


23 February 2006 at 12:02 pm
Staff Reporter
Corporate Mentor Programs are the new volunteer buzz words and the Salvation Army believes it has a recipe for success – with some challenging ingredients that have business wanting more!

Staff Reporter | 23 February 2006 at 12:02 pm


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Corporate Mentors - A Volunteer "Salvo"
23 February 2006 at 12:02 pm

Corporate Mentor Programs are the new volunteer buzz words and the Salvation Army believes it has a recipe for success – with some challenging ingredients that have business wanting more!

The Salvo’s Business Relations Manager, Paul Lacey says the mentoring project called Passport To Work is a four-way partnership that challengers corporate beliefs and delivers jobs to long term unemployed.

The successful ingredients include a combination of a corporate sponsor, the Salvo’s Employment Plus ‘candidates’, a local council and coaching.

Lacey is quick to point out that this finely tuned mentor program is not about making friends such as a big-brother –big sister program. Rather he says it’s a reality check aimed at shifting attitudes and behaviours with some incredible outcomes for the mentors and their charges!

The statistics so far are impressive. Lacey says the program aims to get 70% of the participants into full time employment or an education facility after three months on the program.

Currently the success rate is between 60%and 70% and includes some participants who have been unemployed for 16 years or more. This translates to between 20 or more in each program gaining employment and as many as 43 programs can be running across Victoria.

Lacey says they are constantly being told by current corporate partners such as Bendigo Bank, BP Australia and Origin Energy, to name a few, that as organisations they receive as much if not more out of the program as the people they are mentoring.

He says the result for corporates is the development of skills and putting it back into the business that is so invaluable and assists in changing current behaviour, attitudes and culture within an organisation.

As many as 30 volunteer mentors can take part in a three month program which offers 50 hours of professional training as well as a series of workshops at the end of the program aimed at consolidation and uniting company teams.

Paul Lacey says currently there are three programs all set to be delivered between March and June 2006 that are yet to be aligned with a corporate partner.

He says the most urgent need is in the City of Hume mentoring Melbourne’s most disadvantaged.

Typically, Lacey says the cost per mentor is approximately $1300. This includes:
– 16 hours of foundation training
– 15 hours of group coaching
– 1.5 hours of individual coaching
– 15-20 hours of coaching their protégé
– 6 hours of business integration workshops

The result for business is that the program allows leaders to practice and develop their skills. Lacey says one corporate described the effect on his staff as being ‘born again’.

If you would like to discuss a Passport to Work program and in particular the urgent program in the City of Hume contact Paul Lacey on 03 9843 7881 or email Paul_Lacey@aep.salvationarmy.org.



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