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Iowa, Kansas, & Nebraska Kick Off Coaches' Challenge

For Immediate Release

Media Contacts:

In Iowa - Adam Lounsbury, 515.725.3095

In Kansas - Nicolette Geisler, 785.296.8447

In Nebraska - CallieErickson, 402.323.6252




August 1, 2012 (Des Moines, Iowa) - The National Mentoring Partnership has identified 15 million youth in need of a mentor.  Thousands of these youth live in Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska.  In an effort to help close the gap, University of Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz, Iowa State Coach Paul Rhoads, University of Northern Iowa Coach Mark Farley, University of Nebraska Coach Bo Pelini, Kansas State Coach Bill Snyder, and Kansas University Coach Charlie Weis have issued a friendly challenge to see which state can recruit the most new mentors. 


The Coaches’ Challenge will kick off on August 1, 2012.  Any new mentor application that is received between August 1 and November 30, 2012 will count toward the “score” of the respective state.  By signing up to be a mentor, fans can not only show their state/team pride, but can help improve the life of a child!  The overall winner of the 2012 “Coaches Mentoring Challenge” will be announced the week of Dec. 7th. 


During the 2011 Coaches Challenge, the three states broke all previous records by recruiting 9,896 new mentors including 3,345 in Iowa.  The 2012 target is 10,104 new mentors and 4,000 in Iowa to make an even 20,000 new mentors in just two years.  Over 3,000 youth in Iowa are currently waiting for a mentor and thousands more could benefit from having a mentor in their life.


The Teams



As a project of Volunteer Iowa, The Iowa Mentoring Partnership is the state’s support organization for Iowa’s 80+ certified youth mentoring programs.  Volunteer Iowa is proud to have the support of all three regents’ university football coaches and dozens of private college and high school coaches across the state; promoting the difference that a positive role model can make in a child’s life through mentoring.  To find a certified mentoring program in your area and take the 2012 Coaches Challenge please visit



Kansas Mentors is a statewide mentoring partnership that connects over 200 mentoring programs with each other and serves as a resource center for communities wishing to start a program.  Kansas Mentors works to promote the great mentoring opportunities found throughout the state and to find ways to recruit more Kansans to become part of these efforts. Kansas Mentors began as an initiative under former Governor Kathleen Sebelius and is currently led by Coach Bill Snyder.



TeamMates, founded by Tom and Nancy Osborne, is a mentoring program whose mission is to positively impact the world by inspiring youth to reach their full potential through mentoring.  Mentors meet one hour per week at the school to provide support and encouragement to youth.  There are currently 100 TeamMates Chapters across Nebraska and Iowa. 


Join the Team! Be a Mentor! To find out more or to join the Coaches Challenge contact:

In Iowa: or call 1.800.308.5987

In Kansas: or call 1.785.296.8447

In Nebraska: or call 1.402.390.8326

On Twitter: #CoachesChallenge

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