Everything you need to know about becoming a LGBT+ career mentor with Just Like Us
Through our career mentor scheme, Just Like Us matches ambassadors — LGBT+ young adults aged 18-25 who volunteer for Just Like Us — with mentors to aid their development as they enter the workforce.
Just Like Us is the LGBT+ young people’s charity, and LGBT+ young people face particular barriers in the world of work.
Our research has shown that 25% of LGBT+ young adults go back into the closet upon starting work, and 1 in 5 have experienced bullying in the workplace.
But we want LGBT+ young people to enter work feeling confident in their identities and capabilities. That’s where you come in!
Just Like Us mentors volunteer to support LGBT+ young people by sharing their experience, and building their mentee’s confidence in their capabilities, identities and prospects.
Who can be a Just Like Us career mentor?
To join the Just Like Us mentor scheme, volunteers must be LGBT+, aged 26 or over and should be experienced in their field.
While mentoring partnerships differ vastly and depend on what your mentee needs, as a mentor with Just Like Us, you should:
- Be a listening ear and a supportive presence
- Empower them to find solutions to challenges
- Help them set achievable goals and determine the steps in reaching them
- Help them to build confidence and recognise their talents
- Assist them in honing skills in areas they want to improve
- Introducing them to other useful contacts in your networks
- Be their cheerleader
What’s the time commitment?
You will be asked to attend a two-hour virtual launch event in April 2024. The options are Saturday 20 April 10:30am-12:30am and Tuesday 23 April 6pm-8pm.
Here you will gain further insight into how your mentoring year will work. You’ll also meet your mentee for the first time. If you are unable to make the event we will make alternative arrangements for you to catch up and meet your mentee.
You will then mentor a young LGBT+ person for up to a year. How many times you meet and the structure of your meetings is completely up to you both as a pair. You can be flexible depending on the needs of the mentee and your availability. We generally recommend a guideline of 6 – 10 meetings a year.
There will also be further optional opportunities to take part in roundtables and mid-year events throughout your mentoring cycle.
How are career mentors and mentees matched?
Mentors are matched with a mentee who is LGBT+ and aged 18-25.
They have told us which industries they are interested in, and we do our best to match you both on this basis. We will inform you of your match no later than two weeks before the launch event.
I’ve never been a career mentor before. Would I be suitable?
Mentors join the scheme with differing levels of experience in mentoring.
It’s not strictly necessary to have mentoring experience but we do ask you a few questions in a form beforehand to show us that you understand the core values and principles of mentoring partnerships.
What support will I receive as a LGBT+ career mentor with Just Like Us?
Just Like Us will continue to support you throughout your time as a mentor, and our volunteering team is available to help with any questions or concerns.
We also publish a quarterly periodical which contains tips for mentors and mentees, as well as activities you can try!
How do I sign up?
Interested in becoming a mentor? Sign up here!