The Tanager Place Children of Promise mentoring program is for youth with a parent involved with the correctional system via incarceration, probation or parole. Nationally, 1 in 28 youth will experience the incarceration of a parent before their 18th birthday. These youth are at increased risk of negative outcomes including academics, delinquency and youth violence. The Children of Promise program is preventative in nature and provides youth the opportunity to develop relationships with mentors who can provide guidance and advice that builds upon the youth’s own strengths, goals and desires to help them along their journey.


  • Minority youth in the Linn county area
  • Ages 5-18
  • Youth with a parent who is impacted by the correctional system
  • The program is completely voluntary and of no cost to the family


  • Youth are enrolled for one calendar year from the time of their match with a mentor.
  • After a year the family and program leader, with input from the mentor, will assess the youth’s experience in the program and determine if another year is needed/ desired.

Program Details

  • Group Activities:
    • The program offers group activities two times per month which will consist of games, team building activities, group discussions and academic time among other things.
    • These activities will be held in a variety of places including Tanager Place facilities, Camp Tanager, YMCA, the public library and Mt. Mercy University.
    • If needed, transportation to these activities will be provided by the program.
    • Youth, mentors and select Mt. Mercy University students are encouraged to participate in these activities which allow mentors and mentees to grow their relationship in a relaxed and fun group environment.
  • One on One Mentoring:
    • Youth will be matched with mentors based on shared interests, common experiences and natural relationships that develop during group activities.
    • The goal is to have the match last for one calendar year
    • Mentor and mentee will spend a minimum of 4 hours together each month
    • Activities will generally be no-cost or low-cost in nature
    • The family and mentor will work together to identify a schedule that works for everyone

For more information, please contact Teresa Kurtz at or by phone at 319-365-9164 ext. 379


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