Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme: Become a mentee!

Are you ready to grow your professional capacity, gain new insight and perspectives, and set and work towards your career goals? Apply now to become a mentee in the 2021-22 Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme!

A woman in a service uniform high fives another woman in casual clothes over a workbench.

The Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme

Motivation Australia’s Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme responds to a need for targeted continuous professional development (CPD) for workers that support the health and rehabilitation sectors in the Pacific region.

The mentoring programme pairs personnel supporting the health and rehabilitation sectors in the Pacific region (mentees) with experienced health professionals, organisational leaders and other experienced professionals in other Pacific Island Countries (PICs), Australia and New Zealand (mentors). This gives mentees an opportunity to meet, communicate, interact with, learn and share with leaders in their field.

Through the programme, mentees will be encouraged to drive the mentoring process and discussion. They will gain insight and perspectives from experienced mentors, which helps them set and work towards career goals, build confidence and develop their professional skills.

The programme will run from October 2021 – July 2022.

Applications for the mentoring programme are open now for personnel supporting the health and rehabilitation sectors in eligible PICs (see eligibility criteria).

Applications will close September 20th. Please read the information below before applying.

What is Mentoring?

Mentoring is when someone with experience shares their knowledge, skills, advice and life experience in a supportive and mutually beneficial learning relationship, to help guide another person to reach their full potential.

Mentoring relationships may develop naturally or via a formally structured programme, such as the Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme.

What is a mentor?

A mentor can be a coach, advisor or counsellor. They are someone who can provide advice, insight and perspective on a wide range of topics to help the mentee achieve their goals or better understand complex professional situations.

Mentors are usually people who have lived experience, and can share their experiences and lessons learnt along their journey with the mentee. This exchange should help mentees develop the skills and knowledge to be successful in the way the mentee desires.

What is a mentee?

A mentee is a person who is actively committed to self-development and learning, who is goal-orientated and open to support and guidance from other people.

In order to get the most from a mentoring experience, the mentee must be willing to ask questions, learn, define goals for their career and invest the time into realising these goals. A mentee always has the ultimate responsibility for their career and professional development.

Eligibility criteria for mentees

To allow the best chance for a rewarding and enjoyable mentoring relationship and programme, the following eligibility criteria must be met by the mentee:

  • Currently involved in a field which supports health and rehabilitation in the Pacific. This includes people working for, or involved in, government departments, private health organisations, disabled persons organisations, community groups.
  • Residents of Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Vanuatu. Applications will be considered from other countries based on availability of spaces.
  • Must be able to commit to the minimum participation requirements (see below).

Minimum participation requirements

To get the most out of mentoring programme and to best encourage professional and personal development, both mentor and mentee must be committed to setting career goals and working towards them.

To improve chances of a successful mentoring relationship, the following minimum participation requirements exist:

  • All participants must attend two induction sessions with Motivation Australia in late September/early October 2021 (dates and times to be advised)
  • All participants must prepare for and participate in at least eight meetings together over an approximate nine month period (October 2021 – June 2022)
  • The mentee and mentor must attend at least four out of five group mentoring sessions facilitated by Motivation Australia (times to be advised): November 17, January 19, March 16, May 11, July 6
  • The mentor must assist the mentee to set goals for the programme, their career and personal life, and negotiate the steps the mentee must take to work towards achieving those goals
  • The mentor must assist the mentee to set open and clear boundaries and expectations for the programme
  • The mentee must report to Motivation Australia after each meeting with three things they have learned in their meeting and a photo from the recent meeting
  • All participants must be willing to provide programme feedback and evaluation after the programme has ended.

To gain a certificate for participating in the Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme, participants must meet the minimum participation requirements outlined above.

Other expectations

In addition to the minimum participation requirements outlined above, participants are also expected to:

  • Keep a reflection journal after each meeting (reflection template provided)
  • Participate in mentee or mentor group chats
  • Dedicate time and availability to communicating regularly and frequently throughout the programme
  • Behave in a manner that contributes to trust in the relationship.

The time needed to commit to the programme

As a guide, participants who fully participated in the programme in 2020/21 dedicated approximately 3 hours per month to the programme. This included time for meetings and communication in between meetings with their mentor/mentee.

What are the benefits of mentoring?

As a person supporting the health and rehabilitation sectors in the Pacific region, it may be difficult to connect with a mentor who works outside of your organisation. The Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme aims to connect you with experienced professionals outside of your organisation, who you may not have had the chance to connect with otherwise.

The role of a mentor is broad and as a coach, advisor and counsellor – they can benefit you and your professional career in many ways, including:

  • Providing insight into your career field or desired career field
  • Increasing your knowledge of different organisational values, expectations and practices
  • Providing perspective on your professional challenges and difficulties
  • Providing non-judgemental and confidential feedback on workplace situations and professional work
  • Coaching you through professional topics and skills
  • Developing communication skills
  • Increasing motivation and improving morale
  • Building confidence and self-esteem
  • Building professional networks and a support system
  • Recognised clinical professional development
  • Helping to develop career goals and structured plans to achieve them
  • And more!

The mentoring process also enables the mentees to develop their interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence.

“Having a mentor in your life is really great. This program made me make a friend and enabled me to have an open discussion and share ideas and work-related questions with my mentor. It was very satisfying to me.”

Mentee feedback, 2020/21 programme

What are the responsibilities of mentees?

The mentees must be able to commit to the minimum participation requirements.

The mentoring program requires mentees to be self-motivated learners, who are committed to professional development and personal development. The mentee must be able to set clear goals for their career, with the help of the mentor, be able to ask questions of the mentor and listen to the answers provided.

Mentees must be open to new and different ideas or points of view, and be able to openly reflect on their own ideas and views. They must commit to maintain confidentiality in all discussions with their mentor.

The mentoring program is a professional program and the mentee must therefore conduct themselves in an ethical and professional manner.

Who are the mentors and how will a mentor be selected?

Motivation Australia will use ‘mentor profiles’ to give mentees first choice over who they would prefer to be mentored by. Mentors will provide background information on their career, interests, goals, mentoring style and what they are looking for in a mentor to inform their mentor profiles.

All of the mentor profiles will be then sent out to the mentees, allowing them to select their first, second and third preferences of mentor.

In the situation that more than one mentee chooses one mentor, the mentor will be given the opportunity to provide mentoring to as many of those mentees they like, depending on their availability and willingness.

The mentor is under no obligation to choose more than one mentee to mentor and will be provided basic information about each of the mentees who have selected them to inform their choice.

In the situation that a mentor is not selected by any of the mentees, Motivation Australia would still love to have them part of the group mentoring sessions if they wish to continue their involvement in the programme.

How will meetings be held?

Meetings will be held using Zoom, WhatsApp, Telegram or other video teleconferencing applications where possible. Where internet or location does not allow for video teleconferencing, meetings may be held via telephone.

All data use for internet requirements will be funded by Motivation Australia for the duration of the programme, allowing the mentees to meet and communicate regularly with their mentors via email or other messaging platforms.

What can mentees discuss with their mentor?

As this programme is mentee-driven, the mentee can decide and negotiate with the mentor the topic they would like to discuss. The mentoring programme aims to provide an opportunity for the mentee to ask any questions they may have, or any advice they would like, about their career or professional life, as long as it is within the boundaries that they have set.

To help stimulate ideas and discussion, Motivation Australia will provide the mentee with a programme handbook that contains suggested discussion topics, sample meeting plans and supplementary mentoring information. Some examples of suggested topics to discuss include:

  • Self-awareness and career values
  • Health industry trends and issues
  • Leadership skills and methods
  • Conflict resolution
  • Motivation and mindset
  • Career progression and self-development.

What support will be available to mentees during the programme?

Motivation Australia will provide supporting resources throughout the programme. These resources will include background information and a guiding framework for mentees and mentors.

Motivation Australia recognises that each mentee and mentor pair will communicate, interact and achieve their programme goals differently. The programme and resources intend to facilitate the participation and positive growth of the mentoring relationship, enabling participants to explore the great possibilities created when experience meets enthusiasm.

Throughout the duration of the mentoring programme, Motivation Australia staff will be available to contact for any queries, concerns or feedback.

If the mentee prefers, Motivation Australia staff can also be present at meetings between mentors and mentees.

Frequently asked questions

There are no costs to participate in the mentoring programme. All costs will be covered by Motivation Australia under our Pacific Wayfinders project, which aims to give continuous professional development and learning opportunities to health workers in the Pacific Islands.

Motivation Australia will fund any data use for internet requirements during the programme. Incidental costs, such as travel costs to work to use a computer, will not be covered by Motivation Australia unless there are exceptional circumstances.

The target countries for this project are: Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Vanuatu.

Applications will be considered from other countries based on availability of spaces. If you reside or work in a country in the Pacific Islands not listed above, please get in contact with Tom from Motivation Australia at tomfitzpatrick@motivation.org.au.

No, you will not need your own computer to participate in the programme. If you do use your own computer Motivation Australia will fund any data requirements for internet use during the programme.

If you do not have your own computer, Motivation Australia will organise with your employer to support access to a computer for the programme, and fund your employer for any data requirements for internet use.

Yes, it is still possible to be included in the programme as long as you can still commit to the minimum participation requirements.

At your final meeting you can discuss with your mentor how and in what capacity your relationship may continue. You may agree to continue the mentoring relationship outside of the programme if you wish, or to remain professional contacts.

You will gain a certificate of participation for your involvement in the Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme. To receive a certificate, you must meet the minimum participation requirements.

If you are interested in participating as a mentee, please fill out the form below. For more information on this role please contact Motivation Australia Project Officer Tom at tomfitzpatrick@motivation.org.au.

Mentee application form

The Pacific Wayfinders mentoring programme is part of Motivation Australia’s Pacific Wayfinders project, supported by the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s ANCP programme and the Rotary Club of Torquay.

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