Selecting Mentors

We recruit and carefully screen male volunteers from the community to become mentors to fatherless boys aged 7-14. We go to more lengths than any school, sports club or youth group in New Zealand to ensure Big Buddy mentors are emotionally healthy men of good character. To do this, we developed a world-renowned, 360 degree screening process that we have used to screen over 650 men. It includes:

  • Face-to-face interviews
  • A police check
  • A doctor’s check
  • Phone interviews with character referees, including a female relative
  • A psychological assessment
  • An appraisal of all processes towards a decision

The Big Buddy 360° process used to screen mentors

Big Buddy, how we screen mentors for boys

Great matches

The screening process is rigorous and we are proud to say there have been no accusations of abuse since the programme started in 1997. Big Buddy mentors range in age from approx. 25-65. We carefully match mentors and boys using a combination of knowledge gained from interviewing them both about their interests and ‘intuition’. Then we stand alongside the match for at least a year until it is firm. After that, we check in every six months unless there is an issue, when we become more involved again.