Input provided by Serkan Tezkel, Social Entrepreneur and Mentor Coach from Germany

The student lab at Mentoring Europe has collected inputs from one of our guests who joined the EMS 2022 and has provided inputs on the workshops he attended throughout the three-day summit. For this blog post, he has summarised the workshop session Applying the lens of Social Movements to Coaching and mentoring

Organisation: Oxford Brookes University, UK

Facilitator/s: Dr. Judie Gannon

Dr. Judie Gannon offered us an alternative to improve a sustainable mentoring program based on the foundations of social movements. In our brief and productive journey during this work, we found that social movements are a valuable source of networks to initiate mentoring programs for specific and disadvantaged segments of society.

Social movements are different forms of networks, Gannon said. If they share a common concern, learn how to address that concern, and manage to exchange ideas regularly, they can bring new perspectives. They can easily manage complex structures in an informal way. They are more likely to reach a particular group of disadvantaged people or a particular minority group.

She made it clear that for an effective mentoring program and its implementation, we need three P’s: Purpose, Practical Implementation, and People. In this context, we should answer the questions “What is our program about?”, “What practical actions can, and should we take?”, and “How do we create clear identifications and relationships with the group we want to mentor and coach?” under the heading of “people”.

The challenge is sustainability. She gave some tips on how to meet this challenge, based on social movements. Different forms of networks that have different histories, networks of causes that include like-minded people, movements that focus on change to effectively recruit mentors, and communities of practice are four ideas that were presented during this workshop.

Discussions focused on different aspects of social movements and mentoring. First, we tried to answer how we can bring together different cultures with similar stories and goals to develop a sustainable mentoring program for immigrant youth.

It was made clear that if we are stuck in the question of “Where are we now?” and “Where do we want to go?” we should focus on the participants to foster healthy relationships.

When asked about the skills needed for mentoring and coaching, Dr. Judie Gannon emphasized that we need to be very context-specific in applying skills because they are so similar. Mentors coach in part and coaches mentor in part, Dr. Gannon responded.