RIS Mentor

Related Program: Refugee & Immigration Services

Mentors may meet with their mentees in mutually agreed upon public locations in Cumberland County.
Portland, ME

Type(s) of Volunteer(s) Needed: Individual adults with professional work experience

Position description: Caring and supportive adult volunteers from the Greater Portland community are needed to serve as mentors to refugee and asylee young adults (ages 18-30) to help them reach their educational and professional goals.

Key Responsibilities (dependent upon mentee's needs):

  • Assist mentee in the process of understanding the public school system
  • Assist mentee with the GED or college application process
  • Help the mentee obtain evaluation and recredentialing of foreign transcripts and licenses
  • Provide guidance in the pursuit of professional development; Practice job skills
  • Support of English improvement skills to work towards educational advancement

Impact of opportunity: More than 100 refugee and asylee young adults arrive in Maine every year. These people suffer from traumatic pasts and struggle to continue their education in a foreign language, system, and culture. Young adults (18 and over) who arrive in the U.S. with limited English skills are rarely able to complete high school in the short amount of time they are allowed to attend. The RIS Mentoring Program, a program of Catholic Charities Maine, matches mentors with these young adults to support them in reaching their personal, academic, and career goals.

Qualifications & Skills Required:

  • At least 21 years old
  • Experience/interest in working with young adults from difference cultural backgrounds
  • Strong listening skills and a nonjudgmental, respectful, and patient approach
  • Dependable and consistent in meeting time commitments

Training Offered: Mandatory 5-hour training held every 3 months, additional training as needed

Time Commitment/Schedule: Minimum of 2 hours per week for 6 months to a year


  • Exposure to new cultures
  • Personal satisfaction in helping someone mature, progress, and achieve goals
  • Training in cross-cultural understanding and mentoring skills

Program Contact: Hamet Ly, hly@ccmaine.org, (207) 493-8913

Click Here to Apply Online

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