[Call for submissions] Mentoring for Social Inclusion in Turbulent Times. Political Entanglements, Critical Consciousness and Dynamics of Inequality in Programs

In recent years, mentoring for social inclusion has expanded rapidly as a much-vaunted form of social intervention around the globe. Related programs often facilitate social support by creating and guiding personal relationships between local volunteers and individuals from different target groups, e.g. immigrants, minorities, or marginalized youth.

Far from emerging in a political void, mentoring schemes have generated interest amongst policy makers and advocacy groups as a means to tackle social inequities or as flanking measures. Their proliferation often happens amid cutbacks in public spending and growing inequality. In some regions, mentoring schemes have become a core part of public programs to fight the negative effects of the pandemic.

Scholars, professionals, and activists have highlighted the need to raise critical consciousness within the mentoring experience. This session invites a critical discussion on how programs need to move beyond the acknowledged indicators and explore the potential of mentoring for social change. Thus, the possibilities of mentoring as a tool for social transformation need to be explored, so as not to reproduce social inequalities. Contributions should reflect on mentoring approaches, training, activities, supervision, and assessment. This session invites members of advocacy groups, researchers, government agencies, mentoring organizations, donors, and funders, as well as bottom-up civic initiatives. Contributions from the Global South are particularly welcome.

Session organizers: Òscar Prieto Flores, University of Girona (Spain), oscar.prieto@udg.edu; Eberhard Raithelhuber, Bertha von Suttner Private University (Austria), eberhard.raithelhuber@suttneruni.at

This session is part of “Reimagining Our Worlds from Below: Transnational Conversations on Resistance, Movements and Transformations – A Free Virtual SSSP Global Outreach Conference,” May 18-21, 2022, organized by the Society for the Study of Social Problems and co-hosted by the EJ/CJ digital hub of the Orfalea Center for Global and International Studies at UCSB (USA). Please send your proposal for an individual contribution to the corresponding session organizer(s) by March 20, 2022. Your response to the call for a themed session should entail a title plus an abstract of 250 to 350 words. Please add a brief biographical note.

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