One-on-One mentoring can be arranged through the district offices. Some maintain a local roster of mentors who have been approved, in advance, by the director general. In districts where a pre‑approved list of mentors does not exist, the mentee may identify a mentor and submit the details to the director general for approval. If a mentee is having difficulty identifying a potential mentor, the district office may be able to assist. Mentors who provide one-on-one mentoring do so on a volunteer basis.
Scope of mentoring relationship
It is recommended that at the outset of the mentoring relationship the scope of a mentor’s support be clarified to ensure both parties’ expectations are aligned. The following checklist can assist in tailoring the mentorship to meet the expectations of both the mentor and the mentee.
- Determine mentee’s goals of mentorship The mentee will clarify at the outset his/her needs during the mentorship:
- To have access to a mentor’s advice during a specified period of time as matters arise to generally improve practice skills; and/or
- To have access to a mentor’s advice relating to a specific case with respect to strategy, preparation, presentation, trial tactics, and feedback at conclusion of the matter.
- Clarify terms of consultations The mentor is volunteering his/her time and may determine at the outset:
- The duration of the mentorship, i.e. a specific number of months, or the expected duration of a specific case
- The frequency of consultations
- The methods for consulting, e.g. telephone, email, in person.
- Clarify the mentee’s role & responsibilities The mentee is expected to:
- conduct his/her own research and to identify areas needing clarification. The mentor will assume that appropriate preparation has occurred prior to consultation – time is valuable;
- be receptive to honest feedback to ensure the maximum benefit of the mentorship;
- respect the time limitations of the mentor’s resources;
observe the confidential nature of the relationship all matters discussed during the course of the relationship shall be confidential unless both parties agree to disclosure.
- Clarify the role & responsibilities of the mentor The mentor is expected to:
- clearly identify the scope of the relationship in terms of its duration and frequency of contact, to avoid unrealistic expectations;
- provide open, honest feedback in a context of professionalism and mutual respect;
- observe the confidential nature of the relationship;
- exclude direct involvement in: any dispute resolution; personal and financial matters; career advancement.
- No-fault termination of mentorship Either party may choose to conclude the relationship prior to the full term of the mentorship; at the onset both parties may wish to discuss the need to provide notice as a courtesy.
Acknowledgement and waiver
Mentoring acknowledgement form
This is to acknowledge that mentor and mentee are entering into a formal mentoring relationship.
How to sign-up
To participate in the Legal Aid Ontario’s mentorship program, please contact your district office. More information about the district offices is available on our contact page.
Central East District
– includes the counties of Haliburton, Bracebridge, Peterborough, Coburg, Durham, Kawartha Lakes, Orillia, Newmarket and Barrie
Director General: Lisa Banerjee
Phone: 705-737-3400 / 1-888-590-3961 (toll free)
Central West District
– includes the counties of Norfolk, Haldimand, Brant, Hamilton, Niagara, Halton, Peel and Dufferin
Director General: Cynthia Harper
Phone: 905-528-0134 / 1-877-449-4003 (toll free)
– includes the counties of Hastings, Lennox and Addington, Frontenac, Leeds and Grenville, Lanark, Renfrew, Ottawa and Carleton, Prescott and Russell and Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry
Director General: Annik Wills
Phone: 613-238-7931 / 1-877-314-0933
– includes the districts of Kenora, Rainy River, Thunder Bay, Cochrane, Algoma, Timiskaming, Parry Sound and Sudbury
Director General: Andreas Asmus
Phone: 807-345-1972 / 1-866-297-5559 (toll free)
– includes East York, Etobicoke, North York, Scarborough and Old Toronto
Director General: Tom Kelsey
– includes the counties of Essex, Lambton, Chatham-Kent, Bruce, Grey, Huron, Perth, Oxford, Elgin, Middlesex, Wellington and Waterloo
Director General: Kaitlyn McCabe
Phone: 519-255-7822 / 1-877-449-4002 (toll free)