Core Values

The BGCC and RTG approach to mentoring is lodged in a strength based approach. We work with young people, families, parents and communities acknowledging, supporting and building on existing strengths, assets and community wealth they already “own” and bring to the program. Together we build great programs and great community assets – as individuals and as a community committed to bigger and better futures. Mentors and staff look for abundant opportunities to develop activities and interactions that are mutually enjoyable, success meaningful and challenging in positive ways.

In order to fully grasp the principle of a strength based approach we compare core values to a deficit based approach (adapted from Alberta Mentoring Network; Strength Based Mentoring: A Practice Guide)

Strength Based Mentoring
Deficit Based Mentoring
Primary focus on strengths, interests, gifts, abilities, preferences and potential Primary focus on deficits, problems, labels, diagnosis and/or weaknesses
Relationships: mutual goals and development oriented Strictly goal and control oriented
Nurtures Intervenes
Encourages interactive learning and contribution Teaches to
Conveys: I believe in you when mutually setting high and realistic expectations Directive in setting unrealistic and /or meaningless expectations
Celebrates successes ; small and larger Punishes: negative feedback if non compliance
Communications and interactions are inclusive and youth friendly: Mentor is an ally Communications and interactions are exclusive: Mentor has power over
Adapts approach to engage: Youth engagement principles Tries to “fix” the child/ youth
Challenges and healthy risk taking are learning opportunities to grow, make mistakes, problem solve and work toward success All challenges and risks are avoided

Manual accessed from

Also to quote the Alberta Mentoring Partnership

“Many people think it take special skills or accomplishments to be a mentor. Not so! Mentors come from all walks of life; have different life experiences and different things to offer. What mentors have in common is the desire to make a positive difference in the life of a child or youth.

You don’t need to have superhuman qualities to be a mentor, just human ones. Mentoring offers you the power to transform lives and make a difference.”

Retrieved on October 11th 2015 from

Group of youth