Youth Development

YouthFriends

  • Kansas City, MO
  • www.youthfriends.org

Mission Statement

Mission: YouthFriends connects students, teachers and schools with inspiring mentors and real-world learning experiences to promote success, encourage healthy behaviors and build stronger communities.Vision: An engaged community helping young people to succeed.Guiding Principles: The best youth development efforts strengthen community and encourage all to participate. Schools, as community focal points, are ideal locations to link young people with caring adults. At its core, YouthFriends is about engaging communities to help young people succeed by engaging adults in volunteerism with youth.

Main Programs

  1. Deepening the YouthFriends Footprint
  2. Sharing the Knowledge-MentorMap
  3. E-Mentoring
  4. YouthFriends Corps
Service Areas

Self-reported

Missouri

ruling year

1999

Principal Officer since 2006

Self-reported

Ms. Laura A. Norris

Keywords

Self-reported

School Mentoring Mentor Youth Volunteerism Student achievement friends

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EIN

43-1854792

 Number

6918158306

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Adult, Child Matching Programs (O30)

Elementary, Secondary Ed (B20)

Citizen Participation (W24)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-N.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

YouthFriends volunteers come from diverse backgrounds, yet they share one thing in common: a commitment to help young people succeed.



YouthFriends is a nationally recognized
and rapidly growing school-based mentoring network involving more than
70 school districts across the states of Missouri and Kansas.
YouthFriends Greater Kansas City
currently comprises more than 30 school districts in the bi-state
Greater Kansas City metropolitan area. It is the result of a six-school
district pilot launched by the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation
in 1995. The field experience gained from the pilot led to the
development of a complete operating system to assist future school
district partners. Ongoing input from YouthFriends school district
personnel, volunteers, parents and students continues to shape and
refine the initiative.
YouthFriends has developed a proven, standardized mentoring model that includes trainings for school districts and volunteers, overarching marketing and recruitment strategies, policies and protocols to meet or exceed all national best practice standards, in-house screening tools and technology for information tracking and analysis. YouthFriends shares our tools, training and technology through our National Training Institutes for School-Based Mentoring and our National School-Based Mentoring Conference. A leader in volunteer management, YouthFriends is able to maintain high levels of volunteer placement and retention. 
 
YouthFriends continues to increase opportunities for young people to be matched with caring adult volunteers by establishing a comprehensive K-12 education to business interface focused on increasing interest and study of math engineering, technology and science. Each year, YouthFriends mentors guide 25,000 local students through challenges, helping them meet their true potential.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Deepening the YouthFriends Footprint

YouthFriends provides school districts with a comprehensive, multi-faceted operating system that enables them to initiate, embed and sustain quality mentoring programs within their schools that meet the highest national quality standards for mentoring.

Category

Youth Development, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Children Only (5 - 14 years)

Adults

Budget

$1,421,689.00

Program 2

Sharing the Knowledge-MentorMap

MentorMap is YouthFriends comprehensive, streamlined and replicable turnkey operating system that provides school districts everything they need to establish, manage and sustain high quality school-based mentoring efforts in their schools. By adopting this field-tested package of mentoring tools, training and technology, districts across the country can quickly ramp up effective and results-driven school-based mentoring programs without reinventing the wheel, thereby saving precious time and resources.

Category

Philanthropy, Voluntarism & Grantmaking, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Children Only (5 - 14 years)

Budget

$16,250.00

Program 3

E-Mentoring

YouthFriends e-Mentoring is an easy way to help students improve reading, writing and computer skills while showing increased interest in their schoolwork. Volunteer e-Mentors work with students by communicating through the Internet. Exchanging weekly messages gives students and e-Mentor volunteers the opportunity to spend time together online while students practice new skills and experience enhanced learning. YouthFriends e-Mentors help students improve writing skills and explore careers, while discussing common interests related to academics. By reading and responding to student messages, e-Mentors assist with assigned projects that help connect schoolwork to the real world. e-Mentoring is under the guidance of classroom teachers. All communications are written in the easy-to-use, password protected MentorMail web tool. Students and e-Mentors usually have at least one face-to-face meeting during their e-Mentoring project.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Adults

Budget

$25,000.00

Program 4

YouthFriends Corps

YouthFriends Corps connects elementary students with caring, qualified high school volunteers at elementary schools to encourage healthy behaviors, promote successful outcomes and build stronger communities.

 

The goal of YouthFriends Corps is to::

Youth Corps volunteer an average of one hour a week for a minimum of eight weeks. They are good listeners, provide encouragement, support and friendship to an elementary student to develop the confidence necessary to succeed in school through a tutoring or mentoring relationship, have a sincere desire to make a difference in the life of a child by working closely with an elementary student.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

$15,000.00

Service Areas

Self-reported

Missouri

Additional Documents

photos


External Reviews

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

YouthFnends
Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

YouthFriends

Leadership

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Principal Officer

Ms. Laura A. Norris

BIO

Laura Norris, Executive Director

Laura Norris has been a part of the YouthFriends team since August 2006, and became Executive Director in June 2009. 

Prior to joining YouthFriends, Laura served as the Vice President of External Affairs for Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri, directing its fundraising, public policy, communications and education departments. Previously, Laura’s experience was concentrated in the fields of affordable housing and historic preservation, within which she underwrote new and historic affordable housing projects, directed the Missouri Housing Trust Fund, conducted historic architectural surveys and wrote grants for community development activities for the Kansas City area.

Since 2006, Laura has been a YouthFriends mentor. 

A native of Kansas City, Mo., Laura received her undergraduate degree in architectural studies from the University of Arkansas and then continued with graduate studies in historic preservation at the University of Georgia.

STATEMENT FROM THE Principal Officer

"There are some stories that get better with age, and some you hope will never end. The YouthFriends story is certainly both. Since 1995, our story has continued to evolve. It has captured the attention of tens of thousands of caring volunteers, businesses and entire communities—inspiring and enabling each of them to unite around one common goal: to make a difference in the lives of young people through school-based mentoring.  We watched the YouthFriends story unfold as caring adult mentors continue to make a difference in the lives of more than 25,000 students throughout Greater Kansas City. We heard young people tell us over and over again that their YouthFriends mentors “always” listen, visit them “every” week and like to “have fun.” It just goes to show that it’s often the simplest things that make such a big difference in the lives of young people.
 
YouthFriends
volunteers prove that ordinary people can do extraordinary things. By
spending time with students in schools, YouthFriends mentors are making a
world of difference in the lives of young people throughout Kansas and
Missouri. 
 
It’s such a privilege to tell the YouthFriends story—one that started more than 16 years ago, and continues to get better every year. We firmly believe it is a story that has no end, and look forward to sharing it for many years to come."

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Ms. Sandie Mullen

Westrope Insurance

Term: Jan 2009 - Jan 2014

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

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RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?