Like any kind of lasting human interaction, the building of the relationship is very important. Communication takes place when there is a sender and a receiver. If there is little care in establishing of a clear line of communication, then there is little chance that any kind of significant relationship will be built. Communication, incidentally, can be verbal or nonverbal. Therefore in a mentoring relationship where the two parties our meeting for the first time, there must be intentional and deliberate attention paid or given to the establishment of verbal and nonverbal communication.
In many cases children who are in need of a mentor kind of relationship, have been in some kind of way had a void of a meaningful relationship with an older person. They may have a mother in their life but no father or a father in their life and no mother or they may be raised by grandparents.
Think back to being a child or teenager and be put in a position to not only meet an adult for the first time but I have to forge a relationship. How awkward would that be for you? The younger the child the easier it is because they have picked up the last tenuous or disappointing relationships with other adults or bad experiences in life. The younger the child is the less inhibitions they have. Anything and just about everything is easier when you are a younger child. But as we get older life experiences help to mold the way we see the world we live in and the people we get involved with along the way.