Innovative Collaborations

Mentoring for social inclusion is a broad term used to describe volunteer-based interventions, which facilitate ‘ordinary’ citizens to become mentors for individuals from diverse backgrounds (e.g. youth from underprivileged families, migrant newcomers). The mentoring relationships developed through these programmes aim to break down barriers that hinder individuals or social groups from developing their full potential.

Mentoring programmes have expanded hugely in Europe over the past decade. Ment4EU is a three-year project that aims to ensure that higher education can keep abreast of the growing significance of social mentoring in policy and practice across nations. Led by a consortium of universities from Austria, Belgium, Ireland, the Netherlands and Spain, Ment4EU is funded by Erasmus + KA220 HED – Cooperation partnerships in higher education.

Key activities:

  1. Ment4EU will establish an accessible, high-quality, up-to-date knowledge base on mentoring for social inclusion.
    ✔  Published research on social mentoring in Europe will be collated and mapped.
    ✔  The knowledge base will be made available in a digital repository, designed to be easily searchable and updated.

    ✔  A digital Handbook on social mentoring in Europe will be published, providing a shared understanding of the emerging European tradition of social mentoring.

  2. Ment4EU will develop curricula on social mentoring that can be implemented by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) across Europe.
    ✔  An introductory course curriculum on “mentoring for social inclusion” for HEI students will be designed and developed collaboratively by international partners.

    ✔  The module will be implemented and evaluated as part of an ERASMUS+ “Blended Intensive Programme” in NHL Stenden in February 2025
    ✔  A practitioner focused curriculum for a course on social mentoring will be co-created-created with and for and with practitioners, social partners and (former) mentees.
    ✔  Micro-credentials, and multimedia resources will be made openly available.

  3. Ment4EU will support HEIs to develop social mentoring programmes to foster community engagement, active citizenship and responsible action.
    ✔  Information on how HEIs in Europe have developed social mentoring programmes will be collected and shared.
    ✔  Guidelines for “good practice” and a practical methodology for HEI community engagement in the field of social mentoring will be developed.
    ✔  Results will be disseminated in an openly accessible way.