MENTOR Final Evaluation Report
This report details a three year evaluation of the MENTOR (Mentors Empowering to Overcome Recidivism) Program in the Philadelphia court system. MENTOR program participants who are serving county probation sentences are matched with a volunteer mentor from the community, receive case management from MENTOR staff, and attend a monthly status hearing with one of the MENTOR judges. The program evaluation relied on several data sources to assess program effectiveness, including surveys and focus groups with mentees, online monthly reports from mentors, internally collected program data on service referrals, interviews with stakeholders, and official records from Adult Probation and Parole Department (APPD). Findings revealed that program participants have very positive perceptions of the program, participants receive a high quantity and quality of contact with the program, and stakeholders identify both strengths and weaknesses of the program. The bivariate analyses used in the outcome evaluation showed that the program is associated with a significant reduction in probation revocations compared to a similarly situated comparison group. While the numbers suggest that the program is associated with a reduction in new arrests and an increase in employment, these results did not reach statistical significance. Multivariate analyses failed to find significant effects of program participation on any of the three outcomes of interest.