A selection of pictures showing different mentoring and befriending relationships

Delivery models

Frequently, mentoring and befriending involves a one-to-one relationship based on face-to-face meetings. This has evolved to include a range of flexible models and methods developed in response to the needs of service users. Mentoring and befriending can be offered as a stand-alone package of support or as one element of a multi-intervention approach.

Delivery models include:

  • One-to-one: one person mentors or befriends another.
  • Group: a group of people come together with shared aims and objectives to learn, share and support each other.
  • One to many: an individual provides support for a number of people either in a small group together or individually.

Delivery methods include:

  • Face-to-face: the participants meet in person.
  • Telephone: the use of telephone and telephone-conferencing, often referred to as tele-befriending or tele-mentoring.
  • Internet-based: using electronic methods such as email to deliver the support. Often referred to as e-mentoring and e-befriending.

Go to our case study bank to see how projects have put different delivery models into practice.

Do you want to set up a project?
See our training courses – we have some that focus on specific delivery models such as e-mentoring. See also our resources list for useful guidance to help with managing your scheme.

You may also be interested in being accredited as an Approved Provider by working towards the only national quality standard designed specifically for mentoring and befriending projects – the Approved Provider Standard (APS). We can support you with this – whatever your delivery model. By working through the quality standard’s key requirements you will ensure that you are setting up your project both safely and effectively.

Contact us to find out more about the potential for each of these delivery methods and for further information about any of our support services.


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Contact us

M&B APS Standard
Tel: 020 7520 2442 
Email: infomandb@ncvo.org.uk

M&B Training
Tel: 020 7520 2587
Email: training@ncvo.org.uk

Mentoring and Befriending at NCVO
National Council for Voluntary Organisations
Society Building
8 All Saints Street
N1 9RL

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