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Our Youth Need Your Help

All students deserve to have a mentor. To make this happen, we need strong advocates. We need more positive youth mentors. We need you.


We’re up against a national crisis.

In this country, only 1 in 3 young people will grow up without a mentor. This is unacceptable. We need more community members to help change this for the future.

Our youth face opportunity gaps & lack of resources.

Research suggests that young adults who were at-risk for falling off track but had a mentor are: 55% more likely to enroll in college, 78% and more likely to volunteer regularly, 90% are interested in becoming a mentor, and 130% more likely to hold leadership positions (Mentoring Impact). Here at DonCARES we believe mentoring is one of the most important factors in our students' success, which is why we dedicate ourselves to mentoring those who need it most. 

The demand for mentors is high and too few programs to meet the demand. 

For every student matched at DonCARES of Philadelphia, Inc., there are many more students on the wait list. We need more great mentors in our communities to meet the growing demand. 



There are several ways you can advocate for youth in our communities.​

  • Become a “mentor”

  • Every long-term volunteer mentor in Philadelphia is required to complete (4) four clearances (All in blue)

  • PA Child Abuse - Cost is free for volunteers. This clearance will ask registrants to list all addresses where they have lived and with whom they have lived since 1975. If you only remember part of the address (like just the street name), that is okay; however, it is best to be as thorough as possible. This applies to listing the people you have lived with as well. Through the online portal, you will be able to view the status of your clearance. It could take 2-3 weeks to obtain. 

  • PA Criminal History Report - Also free for volunteers, and easy to fill out. After registering, hit the "Control Number" to open and print the clearance certificate. Make sure to save it to your computer as well. 

  • FBI Fingerprint Clearance - Costs $25-30 and required only for those who have lived outside of PA in the last 10 years. You will need to print the registration and bring it to the fingerprinting site of your choice; without it, you will be turned away. If this does not apply to you and you have been a resident of PA for the past 10 years, you will instead complete the attached Affirmation document and swear in writing that you are not disqualified for service based upon conviction of an offense under PA law.  You are responsible for paying for this clearance. Please note that we will not reimburse you for this payment. 

  • Volunteers are encouraged to use IDENTOGO Code: IKG6Y3

  • Additionally, Pennsylvania requires certain persons or organizations who work closely with minors to report suspected child abuse. This is called Mandated Reporting. Under CPSL, Section 6311, a DonCARES mentor is considered: 

  • An individual paid or unpaid; who, on the basis of the individual’s role as an integral part of a regularly scheduled program, activity or service, accepts responsibility for a child.

  • Thus, it is important that mentors are adequately trained to address suspected child abuse should the issue arise. The training is free of charge and offered online at It takes 2-3 hours to complete. Once finished, you will be awarded a certificate that you will then submit to DonCARES. Please take this training seriously, as you may one day encounter a child whose life and well-being are being threatened.

  • Volunteer with DonCARES!

  • If you are interested in learning more about becoming a mentor, please visit the websites of some of our partner organizations:



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