RGCM: Become a Mentor

How do I sign up?

Send us a message via the Contact page. We will exchange contact information with you, answer any questions you may have, and provide next steps.

Mentorship isn’t the only way to support this project: donations of any size are gratefully accepted. For more information about how to donate, please click here.

What is expected of mentees?

Only young men and women from rural, impoverished families are considered for participation in the mentorship program. During the application process, each applicant writes an essay about their life experiences, explains how they have overcome roadblocks thus far, and identifies their dreams and goals. In addition, the following requirements guide the selection process: applicants must be entering or enrolled in high school, they must demonstrate promising academic performance, and they must express willingness to communicate frequently with their mentors. For both parties, a yearly evaluation shall be conducted to assess what has been accomplished.

What is expected of mentors?

As a mentor, you commit to providing your mentee (or mentees) with emotional and financial support, as well as guidance and suggestions to assist her in achieving their goals. You can help cultivate your mentee’s talents and creativity and steer them toward success. The length of the mentorship is up to you and your mentee, although we hope that it will last throughout her education. If necessary, either can terminate the relationship with proper notice.

Your main financial commitment is for your mentee’s school fees. In general, the mentee’s parents and guardians are responsible for providing scholastic materials and for meeting their basic needs. While this has been a real struggle for most of the parents in our program, who can often afford to pay for only one meal a day for their children, we accept the limited support they are able to provide. This arrangement is designed to help parents maintain an investment in their children’s education and personal development.

You may mentor one or more students on your own, or you can split the costs of mentorship among a group. If they choose, both the mentee and her mentor may blog or share their experiences and successes using social media.

How much does mentorship cost?

A mentor’s financial relationship with his or her (or their) mentee varies based on her needs and level of education, but the typical cost is US$75 per month for a girl in secondary school. This covers her tuition and board, as well as uniforms, supplies, bedding, transportation, and limited medical care.

There is a vocational school that teaches mechanics, carpentry, home economics, brick laying, tailoring, poultry, fish farming, gardening, and other skills alongside the standard curriculum, and the cost of supporting a mentee there is about US$107 per month.

Supporting a student through university costs about US$725 to $948 every academic semester, for four to eight semesters, depending on the program.

What are the benefits of being a mentor?

  • The program facilitates a meaningful one-on-one mentor relationship with a promising rural Ugandan student, allowing you to see the impact of your support on your mentee and her community through regular direct communication via mail, social media, video calls, and other means.
  • In becoming a mentor, you are giving a student the chance to attain an education they could not otherwise afford. Your efforts will help prevent forced early marriages for young women and provide a pathway to the achievement of each student’s dreams and career goals.
  • Once a year, you and any co-mentors will have the opportunity to visit your mentee and their family. Visits are not required, but they are a wonderful way to connect on a new level with your mentee and experience a different culture.
  • The program gives you the chance to network and connect with other women and men who are working to facilitate social and economic development on a global level. The map below shows the growing global network you are joining when you choose to become a mentor.