Mentoring programs for delinquency
- Connect delinquent youth to mentors to promote reduction of delinquent behavior, aggression, and drug use
Strength of evidence
Evidence level: Proven (highest tier)
Proven (highest tier)
Ranked as having the highest level of evidence by County Health Rankings and Roadmaps, the National Institute of Justice
Outcomes and impact
- Curtail delinquent behavior, aggression, and drug use
- May curb alcohol use
- Programs may be most effective for low-income youth and those with “adequate” (versus “very strong” or “very poor”) parental relationships.
Keys to successful implementation
- Note: This content is under review
- Programs yield stronger effects when emotional support and participant advocacy are emphasized.
- Programs that encourage stronger parent-child relationships and have mentors and mentees set short- and long-term goals tend to see better results.
- Recruiting committed, effective mentors is a significant challenge. Programs should build partnerships with community organizations, clearly define the role and necessary qualifications, and carefully consider each mentor's level of commitment, ability, and life circumstances.