The Mentoring Effect: Youth Experiencing Disabilities


The Mentoring Effect: Youth Experiencing Disabilities

1 year ago 1 year ago Published by
This report was published by MentorCanada.


Supportive relationships with adults, including mentoring relationships, foster young people’s positive development and can provide significant psychological protection in the face of adverse life circumstances. In the winter of 2020, MentorCanada surveyed 2,838 young adults between the ages of 18 to 30 in Canada to learn more about how mentors supported them while they were growing up. In total, 42% of the survey respondents indicated that they have or previously had a physical or mental condition or health problem that reduced the amount or kind of activity they could perform (functional disability) and 26% of the respondents indicated that they received a professional diagnosis of a disability or disorder.

Mentoring relationships can play an important role offsetting some of the adverse life circumstances children and youth experiencing disabilities face in Canada. Close to half of youth with a functional disability and youth with a diagnosed disability reported facing at least two risk factors during their teen years. However, 38% of respondents with a functional disability and 40% of respondents with a diagnosed disability did not have a single mentor between the ages of 6 and 18. Early intervention to help more young people who experience disabilities access informal and formal mentors in their communities and through mentoring programs is critical.

MentorCanada. (2022). The Mentoring Effect: Youth Experiencing Disabilities.

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