May 28, 2020 – Virtual Screening & Matching


  • Recruiting mentors (also recruiting young people)
  • Challenges with fingerprinting right now

Home visits

  • Some are not doing them at all
    • Mentors are asked to keep mentees out of their homes until in person checks can resume
  • Safety concerns and need to ensure comfort with both mentor and case manager
  • Virtual home visits are challenging and flawed
  • Concern mentors will bring mentees into the home before it’s safe
  • Virtual Mentor Interviews: 
    • Difficult to detect nonverbal cues
    • Harder to get to know the volunteer
    • Seeing more drop off after virtual interviews than when in person
    • Streamline paperwork with interviews (DocuSign through TechSoup)
  • Virtual Training
    • Complicated as trainings are often hands on and discussion-based



  • Feeling like they are in limbo, trying to figure out how to move forward
  • Virtual matches: concerned about building strong connections and facilitating that
  • Worried about follow-through
  • Student interest in getting a mentor and being mentored virtually

Matches not being able to spend quality time together at the beginning of their relationship

Various degrees of comfortability when meeting in person

  • COPPA compliance (Federal Trade Commission – Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act) – LINK
  • Concerns about how it plays out when matches finally meet in person
  • Youth not showing up to match meetings
    • Difficulty with access internet/devices (especially since some school-districts reclaimed devices over the summer)
    • Burnout of Screentime


  • Make sure families are comfortable first before making matches
  • Make sure mentors are comfortable and being safe
  • Make sure there are virtual options for those who are not comfortable meeting in person
  • Creating and distributing guidelines around socially distant meet ups for matches
  • Keep any activities simple – they should need minimal instruction/guidance
  • Perhaps take a page out of the online dating books
  • A variety of communication styles – shorter and more often communications
  • Situation Planning for recruitment, school-based referrals, school-based programming, and how to do sports-based mentoring (without the sports)

Allowing Matches to Meet in Person (thank you for sharing!):

Other Resources Discussed and Shared:

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