250-286-0611 Campbell River........... 250-338-7341 Courtenay mail@jhsni.bc.ca

Frequently asked questions

and our best answers
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Question

Who can refer a child to KidStart?

Answer

KidStart accepts referrals from parents, family members, teachers, school counsellors, social workers, probation officers and other child care professionals.

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Question

What is the purpose of KidStart?

Answer

Children and youth aged 6-18 are paired with an adult volunteer mentor who they will see for 3 or more hours per week of fun.  The mentor’s role is to develop a supportive relationship, be a consistent positive role model, and encourage participation in recreational activities that help children experience success and gain self-confidence.

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Question

How long will the child I refer have to wait to be matched with a mentor?

Answer

In the Comox Valley it’s a 6 month to 2 year wait and in the Campbell River area it is a 2 year to 5 year wait.  If you know someone who would be a good mentor, and has 3 hours a week to have fun with a child, please tell them to apply to be a mentor today!

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Question

Is my client right for KidStart?

Answer

KidStart is designed for children and youth aged 6-18 who are struggling (not doing well at school, at home or in the community, and who are vulnerable or have the potential to become at-risk).  If your client has one or more risk factors, please submit a completed referral form.

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Question

How do I refer a child or youth to KidStart?

Answer

If you would like to refer your child, please fill out the referral form provided below and have it forwarded to Tara Jordan tara@jhsni.bc.ca, fax: 250-286-3650 in Campbell River and  Wendy Thurlborn wendyt@jhsni.bc.ca, fax: 250-338-6568 in the Comox Valley.

KidStart Referral Form

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Question

What is the best way to describe KidStart to a client or family?

Answer

We often discuss the idea that “it takes a village to raise a child” and that KidStart is a way to create one more supportive, stable, caring, positive connection for children and youth.  Some families really appreciate when mentors (for example a retired teacher), helps their child with homework or applying for jobs.   Bigger families often appreciate that their child gets undivided attention during their KidStart outings.  100% of the KidStart families report that their children have higher self-esteem and self-confidence after 1 or more years of being involved. It’s important to gage your client’s need and interest and then explain what part of the program responds best to their unique circumstance.

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Question

What does mentor screening involve?

Answer

Screening of new KidStart volunteers is lengthy and extensive and includes a home visit, two criminal record checks, reference checks and three interviews.

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Question

What will they do on KidStart Outings?

Answer

KidStart outings are generally 3 or more hours a week and can include activities such as; Hiking, fishing, skating, biking, baking, crafts, art, playing board games, going out for ice-cream, attending special events or any hobbies or interests that the mentor and mentee are interested in.

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Question

What is the difference between KidStart and a program like Big Brothers & Big Sisters (BBBS)?

Answer

These 2 mentoring programs have a lot of similarities in that they both offer 1-to-1 mentoring for vulnerable children and youth.  The main difference is that Big Brothers & Big Sisters is not offered in the Campbell River or Comox Valley area.

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