Building friendships with a purpose  

Published 11:02 am Thursday, September 8, 2022

September is Big Brothers Big Sisters Month, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Polk County is launching its “More Than” campaign to engage potential mentors in the community. Even simple moments with a good mentor can create new, positive directions in a young person’s life. 

 

BBBS of Polk County needs more mentors who it lovingly refers to as “Bigs.” Bigs, who spend as little as an hour every couple of weeks with their Littles (and usually more time than that) are needed and valued throughout our mountain region. 

Little Brother Josiah and Big Brother Jonathan enjoy games like Hide and Seek.

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Nationally, one in three kids in America is growing up without a positive role model. A growing number have one or more family members in jail, prison, or on parole or on probation. Because not all of Polk County youth start off with the same resources, networks and opportunities, the equity gap even locally continues to widen. 

 

Mentorship serves as a conduit between people and possibilities. Big Brothers Big Sisters, more than a century old, has developed a proven model of one-to-one mentorship that contributes to improving the lives of local youth and their communities as a whole. 

 

Nationally, studies have shown that:

  • 96% of Littles are confident they can say no to drugs, violence and skipping school.
  • 84% of Littles have better grades, academic goals and confidence.
  • 95% of Littles feel like they belong.
  • 92% of Littles report confidence in completing their schoolwork.
  • 94% of Littles feel like they have a special adult in their life that they can turn to.
  • 83% of Littles plan to graduate high school and college.

 

Mentorship is more than the “big” moments. A trip to the park is quality time. Sharing a cup of coffee is a moment to be heard. It’s more than a high-five – it’s a moment of acceptance. It’s more than playing sports – it’s building confidence.

 

BBBS of Polk County is working to make those big and small moments happen. Recruitment and programs are coordinated by Program Coordinator, Tara Scoma. Contact her at 443-791-0538, or Polk@bbbswnc.org. Learn more about BBBS of Western North Carolina at www.bbbswnc.org.

 

Submitted by Tara Scoma

Contact: Paul Clark, communications coordinator, (828) 253-1470, paulc@bbbswnc.org  BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS OF WNC 50 S. French Broad #213, Asheville, NC 28801 (828) 253-1470