Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology (PhD)

Degree Level



Psychological Science


Timothy Cavell

Committee Member

Ana J. Bridges

Second Committee Member

Doug Behrend


Big Brothers Big Sisters, Mentoring, parents, Web-based training


Research shows that youth enrolled in formal mentoring programs often wait months before being matched with a mentor. This paper describes the development and pilot test of Caregiver-Initiated Mentoring (CG-IM), a program originally designed to equip caregivers to assist Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) mentoring program staff in identifying and recruiting mentors from their social network. Using a mixed-methods design, the initial efficacy of the CG-IM program was evaluated via a small pilot test. I broadly explored caregivers’ experiences participating in the CG-IM program and a BBBS staff member’s experience implementing it. Caregivers completed a post-survey that included quantitative measures assessing their knowledge, attitudes, efficacy, and intentions in identifying potential mentors, as well as their impressions about the appropriateness, acceptability, feasibility, and general satisfaction. Semi-structured interviews were used to gather qualitative feedback from caregivers and the BBBS staff member. A total of 15 caregivers completed the CG-IM program and the quantitative survey. Eight caregivers and one BBBS staff member participated in qualitative interviews. I report what I learned from caregivers and the BBBS staff member who engaged in the pilot test. Caregivers described gaining knowledge and feeling empowered by their involvement in identifying potential mentors, challenges experienced identifying such adults, and recommended changes for the CG-IM program. The BBBS staff member reported on the benefits and utility of the CG-IM program within BBBS, observed challenges, and recommended revisions to the program. I describe how data gathered from this study can be used to inform future collaborations between mentoring organizations and caregivers to promote safe and supportive relationships within and outside of BBBS via the CG-IM program.