BBBS network to celebrate National Mentoring Month

Published 9:03 am Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Little Sister Hai’lee and her Big Sister Lynn Montgomery attended Take a Kid Fishing Day at Camp Pinewood in Hendersonville, N.C.

Little Sister Hai’lee and her Big Sister Lynn Montgomery attended Take a Kid Fishing Day at Camp Pinewood in Hendersonville, N.C.

January is National Mentoring Month, and Big Brothers Big Sisters is inviting the community to treat Bigs as the celebrities they are in the eyes of their Littles.

Friends, families, staff members and friends of Big Brothers Big Sisters can show their support throughout the month by recognizing BBBS volunteers and expressing appreciation for their service to area children.

The organization is encouraging mention of Big Brothers Big Sisters on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts, while everyone should also take the time to honor the Bigs in the community through your own means. Big Brothers Big Sisters sent “Thank Your Mentor Day” e-cards to Bigs on National Thank Your Mentor Day, Jan. 16.

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“Big Brothers Big Sisters carefully pairs the volunteer mentors with children who face adversity,” said Big Brothers Big Sisters of America President and CEO Charles Pierson. “Through the course of their mentoring, matches continue to provide professional support to the mentors, mentees and families. Studies find the Littles improve in school, their behavior and their self-esteem. While the Bigs are ordinary people in regular professions, alumni Littles tell us that to them, their Bigs were and will always be real-life superstars.”

Former Little Anwar Richardson said that as a child, he was tough and rebellious. Richardson said he often resisted advice from his former Big Brother, Derrick Jackson, a sports writer and now award-winning columnist for The Boston Globe. Now Richardson acknowledges how much he admired and looked up to Jackson. In fact, 30 years later, Richardson is now also a successful sports writer for Yahoo! NFL.

Littles in the area benefit greatly through their mentoring relationships. One local Big Sister transported her Little Sister to school daily for weeks because of a truancy issue. With the problem now resolved, the Little Sister maintains good grades and has a very positive attitude about her goals for the future. A number of Polk Littles have taken swim lessons, made their first visits to the library, experienced horseback riding, hiked trails, engaged in service projects, and explored neighboring communities on outings with their Bigs.

Youth is served by Big Brothers Big Sisters typically live in low-income or single parent households, may live with a grandparent or other extended family, and/or may have a parent who is incarcerated or serves in the armed forces. The world expands for these children through their match relationships.

Big Brothers Big Sisters Youth Outcomes Survey™ (YOS) data finds that 94 percent of Littles in community-based Big Brothers Big Sisters matches maintained or improved their avoidance toward risky behaviors. Eighty-eight percent maintained or improved their parental trust, and 83 percent maintained or improved their scholastic competence.

To learn how you can help celebrate Big Brothers Big Sisters Bigs during National Mentoring Month, go to For more information about the local BBBS, call 828-859-9230 or email

– article submitted
by Karen Dacey