What are the Challenges that we are facing

At Matt Talbot we work with adults that already face so many barriers to reengaging in the educational system. Given the current restrictions it is probable that we will be required to move our educational programmes to online systems or that our participants will have to engage in remote systems to continue their educational journey.

Volunteering as an E-mentor

E-mentoring is a method of mentoring that is not based on physical location or face-to-face interactions. Interactions are conducted through an online platform, through email, video conferencing, skype and/or over the telephone. E-mentoring is a mentoring tool that is frequently used in education, group mentoring and small-scale companies.
The significant benefits of e-mentoring include:
No restrictions: E-mentoring is about accessibility and flexibility. Designed to be incorporated into a busy schedule, e-mentoring is meant to complement the many responsibilities today’s business professionals take on, and to extend its benefits despite the time-crunch. Physical location does not factor in to e-mentoring, and so does not restrict its functionality.
Honesty and clarity: E-mentoring allows mentors and mentees time to think and process new information. Compared to traditional mentoring, which takes place under the pressure of face-to-face meetings, e-mentoring allows room to thoughtfully prepare questions and construct replies. Communication is unhindered by nerves, awkwardness, or social restraints. Interactions are unhurried and flexible. This encourages honest communication and clarity in scope. What’s more, e-mentoring by nature produces a physical record of activity and communications that can be referred to later on. All of these features allow e-mentoring to create an environment of honesty and authenticity.
Alternate method: Rather than bypassing the many advantages that mentoring can provide, e-mentoring offers an alternative to the labour-intensive and time consuming process that traditional mentoring can present. It is a way to gain valuable knowledge and skills, despite the distance, place, and time barriers that many business professionals face.
Flexibility in scope: E-mentorships move and grow with the participants. Because it is not limited to place and time, e-mentoring allows mentors and mentees to make connections across the world, rather than their own backyard. Participants have access to varying viewpoints, expertise, and skill sets. The mentoring environment is fluid, allowing participants to change the method of communication and mentoring strategy as needed. Interactions take place frequently and easily, at the click of a few buttons.

Person Specification

● Strong communication and listening skills
● Ideally from an educational background
● Knowledge of blended learning and online platforms and use of IT in learning methodologies
● IT literate, familiar with digital communication platforms
● Determination to see problems and solutions through to the end.
● The ability to empathise with a non-judgemental approach
● Good organisational and time management skills
● The ability to relate to young people and adults
● The capacity to motivate and act as a role model
● Flexibility and adaptability
● A commitment to equality and diversity
● An understanding of confidentiality and the handling of sensitive information

Role Description

● Sharing skills and knowledge on a given subject.
● Providing encouragement, guidance and constructive feedback.
● Unlock learning potential
● Supporting learners in dealing with blocks/obstacles.
● Helping learners on a one-to-one basis in a digital setting.
● Implementing strategies and supporting learners in self-esteem and confidence-building activities
● Listening to learners and helping them resolve a range of issues that are creating barriers to their learning.
● Drawing up agreed action plans with learners, outlining the aims of the mentoring, and monitoring their progress

Next Steps

If you are interested in coming on board as a Volunteer E-mentor, please email Karen McDonagh, Future Options Senior Project Worker at karen.mcdonagh@matttalbot.orgfor further information.

We may need to make an application on your behalf for Garda Vetting. Details of Garda Vetting can be found at vetting.garda.ie