WHO IS ACCREDITED?

Private Organization Accreditation

Catholic Charities alleviates human suffering and improves the quality of life of 100,000 people annually, regardless of religious background. A staff of 600 provides support and services related to housing, food, mental health, children's services, addiction treatment, and domestic violence services.
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VOLUNTEER TESTIMONIAL

Bonnie Bagley

Volunteer Roles: Evaluator; Lead Evaluator; Peer Reviewer; Team Leader

I have found that being a COA Volunteer builds my professional skills and experience in ways that more traditional workshops do not. The opportunity to learn about best practices through the COA standards and then see how agencies implement them is truly a growth experience.
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Purpose

Individuals participating in Mentoring Services develop supportive, positive relationships that contribute to the achievement of personal, social, and educational growth.

MS 7: Relationship Development

The mentoring relationship is structured to promote the growth, development, and empowerment of the mentee.

Rating Indicators
1
All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice standards.
2
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards; e.g.,
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted, however, these do not significantly impact service quality; or
  • Procedures need strengthening; or
  • With few exceptions procedures are understood by staff and are being used; or
  • For the most part, established timeframes are met; or
  • Proper documentation is the norm and any issues with individual staff members are being addressed through performance evaluations (HR 6.02) and training (TS 2.03); or
  • Active client participation occurs to a considerable extent.
3
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards. Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
  • Procedures and/or case record documentation need significant strengthening; or
  • Procedures are not well-understood or used appropriately; or
  • Timeframes are often missed; or
  • A number of client records are missing important information  or
  • Client participation is inconsistent; or
  • One of the Fundamental Practice Standards received a rating of 3 or 4.
4
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards; e.g.,
  • No written procedures, or procedures are clearly inadequate or not being used; or
  • Documentation is routinely incomplete and/or missing; or  
  • Two or more Fundamental Practice Standards received a rating of 3 or 4.

Table of Evidence

Self-Study Evidence On-Site Evidence On-Site Activities
    • A description of organizational expectations regarding:
      1. the nature of the relationship; and
      2. the frequency and duration of contact between the mentor and mentee
    • A description of how the organization collaborates with personnel at the program site (for site-based programs, only)
    • A description of the organization's efforts to promote family involvement
    • Documentation of collaboration with school personnel
    • Interview:
      1. Program director
      2. Mentor supervisors/coordinators
      3. Mentors
      4. Mentees
      5. Mentee families, when applicable
    • Review case files for mentors and mentees

  • MS 7.01

    Mentoring meetings are frequent enough, and continue long enough, to meet the objectives of the relationship.

    Interpretation: When program type or model precludes meeting frequently or for a long period of time (for example, if a school-based program is designed to coincide with the school year), mentees should be informed about any time limits associated with service provision.

    Research Note: As referenced in MS 4.02, it is often recommended that mentors and mentees meet at least four hours per month, for at least a year. Literature emphasizes that it may be difficult to develop a relationship if a pair does not meet regularly, and research suggests that mentoring relationships may be more effective if they last at least a year. One study found that, compared to their peers who lacked mentors, youth in relationships that lasted twelve months or longer reported improvements in academic, psychosocial, and behavioral outcomes. Youth in relationships that terminated earlier reported fewer gains, and youth in relationships that ended within a very short time actually reported declines in several areas.


  • MS 7.02

    Site-based mentoring programs:

    1. develop an effective partnership with the institution in which the program is housed; and
    2. ensure that the institution’s officials welcome and support mentors and share the program’s understanding of a mentor’s role.

    Interpretation: Programs can be housed at a variety of sites, including schools, faith-based organizations, juvenile justice facilities, and workplaces. School-based mentoring programs should ensure that school officials do not view mentors as academic tutors, and encourage mentors to engage mentees in social activities.

    NA The program is housed at a site controlled by the organization, or the organization does not operate a site-based mentoring program.


  • MS 7.03

    The organization and its staff encourage family involvement to support the development of positive and effective mentoring relationships. 

    Update:

    • Revised Interpretation - 03/15/17

    Interpretation: There may be some exceptional circumstances when involving family members is either not feasible (e.g.,  school-based programs or juvenile justice facilities may have trouble involving families) or not in the best interest of the mentee, including instances where family members are suspected in the abuse or trafficking of the mentee. Nonetheless, organizations are expected to have a process for supporting family involvement that considers feasible and appropriate alternatives when necessary. 

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