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The Heirs of Alcumus

Clarke, Alan
June 4, 2015

Source: (1999) Relational Justice Bulletin. October (4): 5. Downloaded 15 May 2003.

According to Alan Clarke, research evidence indicates that a breakdown in supportive relationships is one of the chief reasons some young people drift into crime. In response a variety of innovative intervention programs have emerged to use adult mentors to provide practical and emotional support for young people at risk. The term “mentor” has its roots in Greek mythology. Mentor was the name of the trusted son of Alcumus in Homer’s “Odyssey;” Mentor was chosen by Odysseus to be guardian, teacher, and adviser to his son Telemachus. After explaining this background, Clarke turns to mentoring in modern-day England, with highlights of the Dalston Youth Project’s innovative combination of a mentoring scheme and a structured, community-based educational program.


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