Be Connected Young Mentors
The Be Connected Young Mentors program is an intergenerational program bringing together high school aged children and older Australians.
Developed by eSafety, the Be Connected Young Mentors program supports organisations in harnessing the digital literacy of young people to mentor older Australians who need help navigating the online world.
Not only does it facilitate essential digital learning for older Australians, but it also gives young people the opportunity to develop valuable teaching, communication and leadership skills.
- At Amana Living, we found a lot of our staff were being asked questions about how to use mobile phones, how to use iPads.
- The people are coming to libraries all the time. It's people looking for help with technology, and we just don't have the resources on our own.
- My memory isn't what it used to be.
- I've got five kids, and you'd think out of that lot one of them would be willing to teach me how to, but none of them are.
- They close themselves off, and in today's world, that meant negating abilities to access forms that they needed for medical care, ability to communicate with us, and it was just through fear. This is what this program does so beautifully, children teaching adults how not to be frightened. We're using technology something the students are very familiar with.
- We're bringing together the two generations. We're giving our girls the opportunity to teach and learn so many skills that they've never had the opportunity to use before.
- This is a great way to get your school involved to open the doors to the local community, it empowers them to share what they know. The seniors develop a respect for young people, they can see that they have a lot to offer, and to contribute to society.
- This is such a marvellous opportunity. How lucky are we?
- The eSafety Commissioner, they have a host of learning material.
- The training booklet that I was working from has got everything in it.
- Having the Be Connected website and to be able to access all of those online modules is really wonderful.
- There's a lot of tutorials to help us.
- The students are given prepared lessons.
- It was all just training to set us up to know how to work in the environment with the senior citizens.
- They had the opportunity to learn technology, to learn that it didn't hurt, how to set privacy settings so that they felt safe.
- Because this is one on one, it doesn't matter what the person's skill or capacity is, you can grade and adapt the session for them.
- I do like the one to one. They're quite happy to repeat it all again. You just go at your own pace.
- This has been amazing. If you got a refresher course, I'll be back. There's always something that I've missed. You can come here and they'll teach you. She's been very good.
- My granddaughter became pregnant, and I would've liked to have gone over there when it was born but through Facebook, I saw every day of that baby's life!
- They're always really happy to see you.
- It makes me happy and it just brings a smile to their face and it brings a smile to mine.
- It gives me a lot of like interpersonal skills. You have to build a connection with them. If I had to describe the course in one word, it would be valuable.
- A miracle.
- I'd say to another aged care organisation or another school, go for it because there are benefits that you can't predict. There is happiness and joy and confidence.
- I would strongly recommend schools and other partners in our community take this on because the rewards are just immense.
- I can't think of a reason why not to do it.
- Jump in there, sign up and away you go.
Be Connected Young Mentors
Who can register for this program?
The Be Connected Young Mentors program is designed for organisations with a connection to young people and/or older Australians that are keen to build the skills of their communities through intergenerational learning.
- School coordinator looking for a Service in Community, volunteering awards, work experience or leadership program for their students
- School Community Service Program Coordinator
- School ICT (Information Communication Technology) or DT (Digital Technologies) lead looking for a program that ties in with an ICT or DT elective
Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award
Coordinator or Award Leader looking for a program for their students to undertake in the Service section of the Award
Community program lead in a library looking to connect with a local school and enhance program offerings for older visitors to the library.
Aged or residential care facilities
Lifestyle Manager in an aged/residential care setting looking to connect with a local school and enhance community engagement for residents.
Coordinator in a Neighbourhood or Community Centre looking to connect with a local school and enhance program offerings for older visitors to the centre.
Register and get started
Registration will open the program tool kit with all guidance, promotional resources and training materials, as well as provide help on how to connect with a partner.
Register to get involved
Register your organisation and get access to the tool kit. You will also have access to a participant feedback report on completion of the program.
Find a partner
Community coordinators will approach and partner with a local school.
School coordinators will approach a partner with connection to older Australians. Coordinators from schools looking for a partner organisation can access the Be Connected Network Partners — a national network of community groups already helping older Australians build confidence in the use of technology.
- Letter of introduction template
- Program delivery timeline template
Promote the program
Highlight the specific benefits to the group you are looking to recruit — be it young people or older Australians — by circulating flyers, posters and newsletters.
- Newsletter article
- Flyer templates
- Poster template
- Social media tiles
- Screen promotion slide
Train the young mentors
Deliver face-to-face training to the young mentors on how to mentor older adults before they are paired with their mentees.
- Mentor training materials
- Mentor revision booklet
- Mentor teaching plan template
Supervise the mentoring sessions
Organise the mentoring sessions and ensure all sessions are supervised and supported. Capture all participant feedback and award all participants with their certificate on completion of the program.
- Facilitation materials
- Mentee practice and achievements template
- Participant surveys
- Certificate templates
- Program feedback report
How long will the program take?
The Program Delivery Timeline below provides some guidance on how long the program will take to deliver.