How does the matching process work?
Our matching process is an art, not a science. We hand-pick matches based on a variety of factors, including location, interests, age of children, and cultural background. The results are match-a-magical.
What countries are mentees from?
Our new neighbors come from around the world! In the past, we have had families from over 19 countries, including Afghanistan, Myanmar, Syria, Iraq, Bhutan, the DRC, Ukraine, and more.
What dates should I reserve for the program?
Mentor interviews will take place the week of August 7. Our mandatory full-day orientation training for mentors will be Saturday, September 9. In-home introductions will occur the weekends of September 22-24, and Sept 29- Oct 1. We will hold 3 “signature” events in October, January, and May.
Can my kids be involved?
Absolutely! Mentors are often excited to expose their children to new cultures and experiences. Our matching is family-to-family, and our events are kid-friendly.
What is the time commitment for being a mentor?
Mentors aim to spend regular quality time with their mentee families for the duration of the 8-month cohort. We ask that you commit to 2-4 meaningful visits each month during that time. While most matches choose to remain friends after the cohort ends, there is no requirement after the initial commitment.
What is the cost of participating in the program?
There is a $400 program fee* for mentors, which is collected after you are accepted into the program. The fee goes to direct support for immigrant and refugee families and supports the cost of mentor training and program activities. Mentors are never expected to provide significant financial support for mentee families.
*The program fee should never be a hardship or a barrier to entry. Scholarships and payment plans are available for mentors who need them.
What kind of support can I expect from Hello Neighbor?
Our program staff will be with you every step of the way. We begin the program with an in-person orientation training and an in-home introduction facilitated by program staff. We have regular check-ins throughout the cohort, and are available to answer questions, offer support, and lend a listening ear. We utilize interpretation services to address serious concerns with mentee families when they arise, and make referrals to a variety of social service programs in the area.
Can I request to be paired with a family of a particular background or language?
We make matches based on a variety of factors, including particular interest in a language or region.
How do you select applicants for mentorship?
The most important quality in a mentor is excitement about and commitment to making an authentic connection with their mentee family. Kindness, flexibility, and openness to cultural differences are qualities that we look for in applicants.
Still have Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.