Civic Enterprises

Senior Mentor Program

Civic Enterprises' Senior Mentor Program, engages people over 55 to tutor and mentor elementary school students struggling to learn to read.

Senior Mentor Program boosts student academic performance, helps schools become more successful, and enhance the well being of the older adults in the process.

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Senior Mentor Program is a registered trademark of Civic Enterprises at the Hungarian Patent Office.

QUICK FACTS: Older Adults and After-School Programs

The Resource
In 2007, the number of residents 65 and older was over 1.5 million in Hungary, made up 15.7 percent of the county's population.

The percentage of older Hungarians is steadily increasing. In 2001, nearly 1.1 million Hungarians were age 65 or older. By the year 2025, this group will make up 20 percent of the county's population (2 million).

Retirement is changing. A significant portion of older adults is interested in part-time work.

Older adults are particularly interested in working with young people.

Research shows that the key qualities found in successful mentors and tutors are easy to find in older adults: patience, taking the time to listen to children while avoiding the impulse to offer quick solutions, and the capacity to show up consistently.

The Need
The hours between 3 and 7 p.m. are when juvenile crime is at its peak, when children are most likely to become victims of crime, and when youth are most likely to engage in drug use and sex.

Students who spend three or more hours at home alone after school are significantly more likely to be depressed, use alcohol and drugs, experience high stress and anger, and perform less well academically.

Students participating in after-school programs report higher grades and test scores, improved homework completion and fewer school absences.

Of the 840 thousand elementary school children in Hungary, approximately fewer than half of them attend after-school enrichment or care programs.

The involvement of an adult mentor in a young person's life for a single year reduce first-time drug use, cut school absenteeism, and lower violent behavior - along with positively impacting alcohol abuse, family relationships, and school performance.

[Experience Corps: Quick Facts: Older Adults and After-School Programs]

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