Thank you for your interest in referring a child to Big Brothers Big Sisters. To help you determine if the program is a good fit for the child, please learn more below.
What is the purpose?
The purpose of our program is for each enrolled child to achieve higher aspirations, greater confidence, better relationships, avoidance of risky behaviors and educational success. National research has shown that being in a positive relationship with a volunteer mentor (we refer to them as “Bigs”) has a direct and measurable benefit in a child’s life (we refer to the children in our program as “Littles”).
Littles in our program:
· Are more confident
· Are more likely to stay away from drugs and alcohol
· Do better in school
· Get along better with family and friends
· Feel better about themselves
How does it work?
A Big will meet with the child on a one-to-one basis approximately 2-4 times a month either in person or using technology. Depending on your child’s needs and interests, these visits will consist of activities such as helping with homework, having lunch together, or going to an event together. A Big Brothers Big Sisters staff member (called a Match Support Specialist) will monitor the progress of each match at the school to ensure the match is safe, everyone is happy with the match, and that the child’s needs are being met.
Who are our Bigs?
Our Bigs are volunteers in your community. They are students, retirees, members of organizations, and just ordinary adults. The safety of all children is extremely important to us, therefore each Big in our program must complete a thorough screening process conducted by our professionally trained staff.
Who are our Littles?
Children in our programs must meet the following criteria. They should:
· Be capable of benefiting from a relationship with a Big
· Want a Big and understand the role of a Big
· Have a parent/guardian willing to be a partner with us by maintaining contact and helping keep us informed of changes within the family/match
We want to make sure that we find the best Big for your son or daughter. Just as it takes time for anyone to make new friends, it may take us a while to find the right Big. Bigs and Littles are matched based on parental preference, similar personality, background, geographic location, and shared interests.
If you have any questions, please contact us.