• Marianne Rahbæk
4. semester, Socialt Arbejde, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
This master thesis focuses on youth volunteer mentor relationships among young people which aim is to support young people from a public care background with educational support.

In recent years, the political focus on the use of person-oriented, face-to-face volunteer relationships as a relief for public welfare services has increased in Denmark. Additionally, volunteer mentoring is increasingly being used as a purposive initiative to get vulnerable citizens closer to education or the labor market. With an emphasis in such a mentor program (Viadukt) in a volunteer organization (Ungdommens Røde Kors), this thesis is a comparative multiple case study that examines how governance is taking place within three volunteer mentor relationships between a young mentor and a young person from a public care background (the mentee). Finally, the thesis discusses which conditions of possibility for educational support for young people from a public care background the mentor relationship provides.

The empirical foundation for the thesis is a qualitative study. Three mentors and three mentees have been interviewed both individually and together representing three cases of a volunteer mentor relationships. Theoretically, the thesis is based on interactionist constructivism. This offset, in combination with the findings from the empirical data, has resulted in a governmentality perspective on volunteer mentor relationships. The theoretical framework of the thesis consists of Michel Foucault’s theory on power, knowledge and subjectivity, hereby mentoring as a pastoral power, power technologies, and self technologies.

The thesis shows that governance within mentor relationships takes place very differently and thereby gives widely different possibilities for providing educational support.
The differences in the way the governance takes place appears at various, individual prior expectations and motives for the mentor relation. These different expectations show to be hard to unite in a practice where the governance shows to be both ways between the mentor and the mentee. Also, the prior expectations and motives holds different goals and intentions that discloses certain subject positions which are taken further into the relations.
Following this, the thesis shows, in practice, in the interaction between the mentor and the mentee the mentors possess different governance rationalities that have impact on the governance in the mentor relationship and the available subject positions.

In conjunction with the different governance rationalities and subject positions, the thesis shows that the governance in the interaction between the mentor and the mentee also appears through mainly two technologies: a reflexive technology and a mimetic technology. These exist in different ways within the relations, according to the mentor’s ways of using them and according to the mentee’s way of either installing them or exercising counter-power. Both elements show a connection to the different governance rationalities and subject positions as well as set different possibilities for a mentor relationship of posing educational support.

Overall, volunteer mentor relationships among young people tend to be both a potential and uncertain tool as educational support for young people from a public care background. Finally, based on the findings above, the thesis ends up presenting several recommendations for this kind of social work.
Udgivelsesdato15 maj 2017
Antal sider91
ID: 257599354