LINK Mentoring Grinnell

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  • Mission: to lead, inspire and keep children educated, enriched, and engaged.
  • Priority: providing a safe, inclusive, stimulating learning environment to nurture the healthy cognitive, social-emotional and physical development of all children.
  • Vision: to support our community’s long-term and ongoing efforts for child care and youth development in the Grinnell community.  We strive to expand options for high quality, developmentally appropriate education and enrichment for children and youth.
  • Goal: to expand options for high quality, developmentally appropriate education and enrichment for children and youth.
  • Goal:  to expand opportunities provided by LINK Grinnell to address families’ needs for child care and children’s needs for additional educational and extracurricular options, with the development of an after-school program.

Location: Grinnell (3 elementary schools)

Needs: LINK Mentoring offers one-on-one mentoring to K-8 students in Grinnell. We are always looking for college students who would like to volunteer to be a mentor to a student. Mentors meet with their students once a week during the lunch hour. During this time the pair eat lunch, play games, make crafts, etc. The mentors serve as positive role models in the students’ lives. We also need volunteers for the after-school and summer programs (our goal is about 1 adult to 10 children, or 2 to 15), as well as community mentors who are ready to act when a child is in need.

  • Childcare
  • Mentoring
  • Working/leading with specific activities (crafts, projects, etc)
  • Office work
  • Lesson writing
  • Grant writing
  • Organizational efforts (inventory/organizing physical and electronic items/etc)



  • One-time events: Yes
  • Ongoing: yes
  • Groups possible? Group help is needed, especially for one-time events. Please contact Ashley Risting at


When is service needed: The beginning of the summer program (April/May) is very busy with hiring new staff, preparing lessons, hiring Americorps leaders, etc. It would be great to have assistance during these times, but it is hard for us to get back to people in a timely manner if they are initially reaching out during that period.

Number of hours: For the mentoring program, a 1 hour weekly during the mentored child’s school lunch period; a full school year commitment is needed to provide a consistent mentoring connection for the child.  The after-school and summer programs are more flexible than the weekly mentoring commitment, and can occur as works with the volunteer’s schedule, hours can be selected from after school program school days 3 to 6, and the summer program runs 7:30 to 5:30 starting about a week after the public schools let out until about 2 weeks before the new school year begins.  Volunteers can be present during whatever periods of time work for them.


  • In-person: yes
  • Hybrid in-person/virtual possible: yes
  • Fully virtual possible: yes (possible for grant writing)


Prerequisites: An interview and a background check (DHS and local PD)

Background check required: yes

Equipment/logistics needed: To be a volunteer we require background checks as well as some training for the program and DHS requirements. For employment, there are these same requirements as well as continuing education that we provide.


Training supplied: Since mentors will be working one-on-one with a student we have a one hour training course that covers working with children, how to spot signs of child abuse, and how to get started as a mentor.

Equipment or logistics supplied: Mentors do need to travel to one of the schools in Grinnell (Bailey Park, Fairview, Davis, or Grinnell Middle School). Currently People Rides provides transportation to our mentors free of charge.


How to apply: Apply via e-mail to Ashley Grundler:

Contact: Ashley Grundler, mentoring director, and Ashley Risting, Executive Director


Operation information: Each of our programs helps support our mission and gives children and families access to high-quality care and programming including health and wellness activities, in a safe and secure space.  LINK Grinnell offers after-school care, and full day care on Professional Development days, summer programming, one on one mentoring.

If you are with this organization and need to update your listing, please access our update form on this page: For Community Partners