As Big Brothers Big Sisters staff and volunteers see first-hand, many families are living with complex challenges stemming from systemic injustice and structural inequality. Children in these families are more prone to facing adversity which could negatively impact their academic, social and economic well-being.
This is one of the reasons mentorship programs like those provided by Big Brothers Big Sisters are crucial for youth development.
“Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Sudbury is looking to increase our volunteer base of individuals, couples or families wishing to be matched with children and youth on our waiting list,” said Chantal Gladu-Depatie, Executive Director of Big Brothers Big Sisters in Sudbury.
Currently, there is an immediate need for Big Brothers in our community. As of March, there were 24 boys waiting to be matched with mentors in Sudbury. “Boys can often spend two to three years on the waiting list,” Gladu-Depatie explained.
Those two to three years can be extremely difficult for children facing poor living conditions and family violence, mental health issues, difficulties in school or identity challenges.
But you can make a difference: The only investment required from a mentor is time.
The program usually requires two regularly scheduled outings a month, of several hours each, and a minimum one-year commitment.
Through regular outings and one-to-one mentoring services, a relationship is developed between the mentor and the mentee. These relationships, built on trust and common interests, are supported every step of the way by experienced case workers.
Often, the result is just as life-changing for the mentor as it is for the mentee.
Mentorship programs, like Big Brothers Big Sisters, help to alleviate the impact of these inequalities by empowering children and providing them with guidance so they can build the confidence to reach their full potential and make safe and educated choices about their future.
“All our programs and services are provided at no cost to the children and families we serve,” Gladu said.
That is why fundraising dollars are so crucial to the organization.
By donating to or volunteering with Big Brothers Big Sisters, you have the opportunity to make a significant and profound difference in the life of a child facing adversity.
If you are interested in becoming a mentor, donating to the organization, or have questions about how you can make a difference, get in touch with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Sudbury by clicking here or by calling 705-673-6161.