Some Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies in the United States and Canada offer a program called Big Families. These “matches” include an at-risk child in the program and a family who would like to bond with and mentor the child together. The benefits of the program are shared exponentially by everyone involved. Many adults want to mentor, but don’t want to sacrifice time with their own children while they are away with a Little. Parents also mention that they appreciate the opportunity to involve their children in empowering others. The Little in the relationship benefits not only from the guidance and attention of the adult mentors, but also from observing and interacting with a healthy family unit.
So many Littles in the program don’t have both parents participating in their lives. These children don’t grow up seeing the playful banter, loving embraces and respectful conflict resolution that takes place on a daily basis within a healthy family. These lessons become very important as the Little grows up and begins to have family relationships of his or her own.
Recently, Brand Partners Jacque and Lindell Roth met their second Little as part of a Big Family match. Jacque, Lindell and their children Tyler and Lauren enjoyed mentoring their first match together, so when that came to a close, they decided to get involved again! Big Brothers Big Sisters introduced them to Little Brother Kaleb and they are looking forward to many fun times ahead. In many parts of the country, there are hundreds more boys on the BBBS waiting list than girls, so it is likely that Big Couple and Big Family matches will be given a Little Brother to mentor.
If the Big Family match, or even a Big Couple match, sounds like a good fit for you, speak with your local BBBS agency to see if they offer these types of mentoring relationships. You can find your local BBBS agency by clicking this link bbbsa.org/Neora and choosing the “Volunteer” button.
Check out pictures of Little Brother Kaleb at Tyler’s football game and hunting with Lindell!