September 2, 2014                                                                             For more information contact:

For Immediate Release                                                                      Cheri Faunce



Kansas and Iowa go Head-to-Head in Annual Coaches’ Mentoring Challenge


TOPEKA – Kansas Mentors today announced that it has entered into a friendly competition with its counterpart in Iowa to see which state can recruit the most new mentors during the annual Coaches’ Mentoring Challenge. Coinciding with this year’s college football season, this Mini-Challenge between Kansas and Iowa kicked off September 1 and will run through November 30. The winner of the mini-challenge will be announced the first week in December.


According to the National Mentoring Partnership, one in three youth are currently in need of a mentor.  In an effort to bridge this mentoring gap, the Coaches’ Mentoring Challenge is an annual campaign designed to recruit adult mentors and connect them with area youth.  Coach Bill Snyder at Kansas State University and Coach Tom Osborne at the University of Nebraska joined the program in 2008, with Iowa coming on board in 2010. 


“Both on and off the football field, caring role models are making a tremendous difference in the lives of our young people,” said Cheri Faunce, Kansas Mentors Director.  “We are excited to continue the legacy of this campaign by co-hosting a Mini-Challenge with Iowa.”


The popularity of the Coaches’ Challenge grew to an all-time high this year with every school in the Big 12 Conference and several Big Ten schools agreeing to participate in the 2014 campaign.


During the last six years, states participating in the Coaches’ Challenge have recruited more than 35,000 new mentors.


“The mentoring effect can improve academic, social and economic prospects for our young people,” said Mary Sheka, Iowa Mentoring Partnership Director.  “That in turn strengthens our team, our campus, our communities and our country.”


Currently, there are thousands of young people in Kansas and Iowa, especially young males, in need of a caring role model.  In as little as one hour a week, caring adults can offer the support and guidance these young people need to succeed. 


Join the Team. Be a Mentor.

In Kansas: Kansas Mentors,, 785-368-6211

In Iowa: Iowa Mentoring Partnership,, 1-800-308-5987