Our History

The Saturday Mentoring Program was started in September 2004 under the auspices of the Word of Truth Church in Pickering, Ontario. The church provided material and resource support to the program for over two years. The mentoring program was the ‘brainchild’ of Alvin Adams who was involved in organizing similar programs in Scarborough, Toronto. In April 2007, the Durham Educational Mentoring Program (DEMP) was incorporated as a non-profit organization and became the successor to the Saturday Mentoring Program, independent of the church.

There have been up to 121 students, between the ages of five and 18 years who needed assistance in improving their educational performance, registered in the Program. Thirty volunteers, many of whom are certified teachers, assist in providing mentoring and teaching. Volunteers are proficient in the level of education for the grade in which they assist. Coaches also provide support to help students and their parents understand their rights and obligations, write letters, and negotiate resolutions that relate to student problems, such as suspension, expulsion or curriculum matters with school officials.

In March 2009, DEMP received a provincial grant and incorporated health promotion and physical education into its curriculum. Our program now focuses on academic learning, as well as both the physical and mental health of our students. In addition, the program offers health promotion information to parents and guardians.