Become a Veterans Mentor

LAVMP workers


Veterans Mentors

La Crosse Area Veterans Mentor Program, Inc. (LAVMP) relies extensively on Veterans Mentors. Veterans Mentors play a critical role helping Veterans who are involved in the criminal justice system. Veterans Mentors make sure the Veterans they work with:

  • Participate in and receive necessary treatment for substance abuse, mental health and other challenges.
  • Address marital, family, employment, housing and other challenges.
  • Re-enter civilian life as productive citizens.

The ultimate goal is to reduce criminal recidivism – that is, the likelihood of repeat criminal offenses – among Veterans.


What A Veterans Mentor Is

Veterans Mentors perform the following valuable tasks for Veterans:

  • Coach
  • Guide
  • Role model


What A Veterans Mentor Is Not

Veterans Mentors are not:

  • Parents
  • Professional counselors
  • Social workers or therapists
  • Doctors
  • Lawyers
  • Private investigators
  • Pastors or chaplains

Veterans Mentors avoid the following activities:

  • Giving professional advice.
  • Trying to change a veteran’s values, attitudes or beliefs.
    • If changes occur, it should be the veteran’s choice, not yours.
  • Trying to solve all of the veteran’s problems.
  • Just chatting and having coffee.
  • Socializing with a veteran over a beer, two, three or more.

Ultimately, Veterans Mentors are responsible for encouraging, guiding and supporting veterans as they progress through the criminal justice system or deal with other challenges.


Veterans Mentor Training

 Veterans Mentors are trained before working with any Veteran or service member.

  • Classroom Training
  • LAVC Courtroom Observation
  • Shadowing A Trained Veterans Mentor

Upon completion of training, LAVMP mentors are certified by the LAVC Judge. Veterans Mentors receive training on subjects including:

  • Confidentiality
  • Communication skills
    • Active listening
    • Identifying body language
    • Empathy
  • Services available to Veterans
  • Basic court proceedings


Eligibility Requirements

Each LAVC Mentor must meet the following minimum requirements:

  • Be discharged from the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard or a corresponding branch of the Reserve or National Guard under conditions other than punitive (courts martial).
  • Have a genuine concern for veterans.
  • Undergo a background check and be in good standing with the law.
  • Adhere to LAVC-LAVMP Policy and Procedures Manual.
  • Complete Veterans Mentor Training and Continuing Education.
  • Commit to serving as a Mentor for at least 12 months.
  • Be certified and sworn in as a Mentor by the LAVC Judge.

Non-veterans interested in serving as mentors for Veterans’ family members may do so provided that they:

  • Have a genuine concern for veterans and their families.
  • Undergo a background check and are in good standing with the law.
  • Adhere to LAVC-LAVMP Policy and Procedures Manual.


How To Apply To Become A Veterans Mentor

If you are interested in applying to become a Veterans Mentor, please click on the following hyperlink, print, complete and return the following form to LAVMP:

LAVMP Application

Click Here for PDF Form

Return Address:
Executive Director

La Crosse Area Veterans Mentor Program, Inc.
La Crosse County Administrative Center
212 6th Street South, Room 450
La Crosse, WI 54601