About YMI

The International Mediation Institute (IMI) recognises the difficulties that young mediators and mediation advocates can encounter in gaining experience in their field and established the Young Mediators Initiative (YMI) in 2010, with the aim of encouraging and assisting young mediators and mediation advocates worldwide. The mission and vision of YMI is:

  • To connect young trained mediators and mediation advocates worldwide to create a platform to exchange ideas and experiences amongst each other, and
  • To facilitate interaction with experienced mediators who can offer experience-generation and learning opportunities.

YMI will achieve this by bringing together initiatives that support young mediators and mediation advocates and by acting in a convening role to those groups, offering the opportunity to act as local chapters for the YMI and to network with similar initiatives worldwide.YMI does not compete with any similar groups, but rather will support those initiatives in their mission to assist young mediators in their quest for experience.Born out of discussions between IMI stakeholders on the importance of fostering young mediators worldwide, YMI recognizes the importance of supporting them on their path towards experience and seeks to address the difficulties that both young mediators and mediation advocates face when trying to gain practical experience and knowledge before and after formal mediation training.This will be achieved through the establishment of a web page, hosted by IMI on the IMI Portal, where young mediators and mediation advocates can meet, discuss and exchange ideas through Young Mediator forums. Young mediators and mediation advocates will have the opportunity to create their own YMI profile and to be visible to experienced mediators and mediation advocates who can provide the opportunity for them to be appointed to mentorships, assistantships, co-mediator and advocacy and interpreter opportunities and scholarships.Within the process of exchanging experience and learning from experienced mediation professionals, young mediators and mediation advocates should eventually qualify as IMI Certified Mediators and Mediation Advocates. The Young Mediators Initiative is run by the YMI Team on a voluntary basis.

“A big thank you to the YMI initiative that has given a platform for young mediators like to connect and share experiences with professionals”. Gracious Timothy (India)

”As an aspiring young mediator, it can be hard to get a foot in the door. To those young mediators who feel the same way, I highly recommend that you get involved in YMI. Thanks to the initiative, I was able to connect with experienced mediators internationally and get some valuable experience with an inspiring mediator in Australia.” Olivia Staines (United Kingdom)

“IMI has been one of the main sources of information for me since I started studying mediation. Through the Young Mediation Initiative I connected with NMv and I joined their team for the 7th ICC Mediation Competition. I also connected with UNOY-Peacebuilders and today I am a member of the UNOY Advocacy Team. Currently, I am certified mediator in Spain and I am conducting researching in mediation. I still use the IMI website frequently as a source of information for my research”. Virginia Vilches Such (Spain)

“I would like to thank the Young Mediators Initiative very much for bringing me into contact with this intelligent mentor.” Pieter Vandekerckhove (Belgium)”Mentorship requires a passion through guidance, inspiration and education, in order to refine skills and abilities, which will enrich and enhance – all  parties involved.” Mary Damianakis (Canada)

“Since becoming a member of YMI, I have gained valuable connections with experienced mediator-mentors that will help me develop my skills at a higher level”. YMI Mediator, Ronnda Zeula (USA)

“As one of the mentors of the YMI program you get the best of both or even more worlds: you get to reevaluate/assess yourself as a mediator, your approach to the mediation at hand as a teacher/supervisor, and get fresh input through questions and remarks from your co. Who would want to pass up such an opportunity? We, as IMI Certified Mediators, should see a mentorship as a must to put our practice and profession on an even higher level than today”. (Kitty Duell, The Netherlands/ MN, USA)

“I have found great inspiration and reward from participating in the YMI Mentor program as a mentor. No matter how long we all have mediated we can always learn from others as we encourage and assist young mediators in their pursuit of this worthwhile profession. I urge everyone to join and share.” (Tom Valenti, Chicago, IL, USA)