Big Brothers Big Sisters holds mentor recruitment drive

Published 6:04 pm Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Former Big Sister Kaylene Durham spent time with her Little Sister Chloe at Polk Central School. Kaylene mentored with Big Brothers Big Sisters as her senior project at Polk County High School. (photo submitted by Karen Dacey)

Big Brothers Big Sisters has started a Back-to-School Mentor Recruitment Drive. The organization hopes to recruit new volunteers to begin helping elementary school students in the next two months.
Interested persons age 18 and older are invited to an information session on Tuesday, Sept. 20 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Polk County Library to learn about volunteer opportunities. Another information session will be held at the Landrum Library in October.
The Volunteer Recruitment Drive helps the organization meet the needs of youth who can benefit from a one-on-one role model. Volunteers are needed to share one hour a week with an elementary age student in the school-based and after-school programs. Volunteers can choose to mentor in one of five area elementary schools in Polk County and Landrum.
Youths enrolled with Big Brothers Big Sisters are often not matched with a mentor in the community-based program right away because of a shortage of mentors. After their parent or guardian has requested a mentor for them, some wait a year or more to be matched.
The mentor spends part of the hour reinforcing academics with the student through reading, class assignments, or working on vocabulary words or multiplication facts.
The mentor and child spend the rest of the hour enjoying a variety of activities, including art and board games, to build the youth’s self-confidence and social skills. School counselors report that students who have a Big Brother or Big Sister improve in self-confidence, academic performance, and in relationships with others.
To volunteer as a mentor in Polk County or Landrum, call 828-859-9230.
– article submitted by Karen Dacey

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