Mentors make a difference

For years, Big Brothers, Big Sisters has come to SHS in search of high school ‘bigs’ for elementary school ‘littles’. Any sophomores, juniors, or seniors who have a study hall as well as a license and a personal vehicle can sign up for the program to work with children in first through fifth grade. Students are allowed to ride with others going to the same school during the same period with parent permission. Those who wish to participate in the Big Brothers, Big Sisters program can fill out a form available in guidance specifying which school they would like to visit as well as other various personal information. Then the program manager, Amy Asdell, will contact and interview the applicants in hopes of best matching them with a ‘little’.

 

“I interview both the bigs and the littles,” said Asdell. “I then see if there are preferences that they have that would make them more compatible with a specific child. Girls match with girls and boys with boys.”

 

A few SHS students have already signed up for the program but more volunteers are wanted, especially for Lexington and Johnson. Asdell said, “I would really like to send kids to LES and JES but it is harder since those schools are further out.”

 

‘Bigs’ and ‘littles’ meet once a week and the kids get out of class for 30 minutes to hang out with their ‘big’. Mrs. Cindy Gibson, the guidance office secretary said, “In the past, they would do different activities with them. Maybe sports or homework.”

 

Asdell suggested that the “bigs can play basketball, board games, help with homework, read books with them or do arts and crafts.”

 

So far only 10 SHS students have signed up. The Big/Little and Asdell hopes to have many more volunteers. All hours spent with the assigned little counts as volunteer service hours. According to the Big Brothers, Big Sisters website through the program “you have the opportunity to help shape a child’s future for the better by empowering him or her to achieve.”

 

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