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1. Mentees must join SABA and complete the “Mentee Application”, to participate in the program.
2. Mentees should do their own research (including but not limited to reading,
The Beekeeper’s Handbook
), before asking for help. Some resources: SABA’s website (adirondackbees.org), Beehackers.com, Beesource.com, www.BeeKind.com; Anne Frey’s classes at SABA; hands-on workshops offered by SABA for members, in addition to other clubs programs and conferences.
3. Be respectful of your Mentor’s time they are probably helping others also.
4. Working with two mentors is acceptable. Don’t be a mentor “hog” or a mentor “hopper”, and keep everyone in the loop.
5. Mentees are encouraged to help your Mentor with their beekeeping tasks like cleaning frames/supers, assembling frames/supers, cutting the grass around hives, moving hives, etc. They should be available to work the Mentors hives with him/her and learn from the experience at the Mentor’s yard/s.
6. Save time and be prepared before your Mentor arrives. Get everything ready that you will need for that day’s visit (e.g., hive boxes, extra frames, work site and whatever else will be needed that day including but not limited to a list of questions). Don’t expect your Mentor to bring the equipment/tools for the day’s work.
7. Work on your hives in a continuous, timely manner throughout the season based on suggestions from your Mentor, rather than always wait for your Mentor to be there.
8. If any problems should arise with your Mentor, contact the Mentor Program Chairperson immediately.
9. If you cannot find a mentor to work with, you can "mentor" yourself! This means taking a pro-active approach of asking questions, by making phone calls and/or writing emails with questions, attending meetings, classes, workshops, reading the past and current issues of The Beeline newsletter. You can ask experienced beekeepers for advice or information at meetings and even volunteer to help them when they work their hives. Even if you have a mentor, there may be times they are not available. We all need a support network that is broader than relying on one person. Honeybees help and support each other. This is why they are successful! Whether you are a beginning beekeeper or an intermediate beekeeper, taking the initiative to find good answers from many sources will add to your pleasure and long‐term success in working with your bees and your peers!