For some children, a new school year looms as a time of anxiety and dread. Summer time is fun. It’s a time for being with friends and family, a time for playing outdoors, swimming, hiking, and fishing. But for some children, the worries begin to fester as the new school year approaches. Concerns over new teachers and new classrooms, sadness over old friends who have moved away, nervousness about homework, and about fitting in, all churn away in a child’s mind.
How is a child to cope? In truth, often that child just needs a friend. That’s where Big Brothers Big Sisters come in. In this special one-on-one mentoring program, a “Big” offers a special friendship to the “Little.” The Big is someone who provides consistency, fun, new experiences, a listening ear, gentle guidance, and above all, friendship.
Bigs spend two to three hours each week with their Little, enjoying a wide variety of activities. Sometimes that time is spent going to new places, enjoying outdoor activities, or learning new skills. Other times are spent doing simple things like running errands together, cooking a meal, washing a car, or other activities that many of us take for granted. In truth, it is not the activity that is the most important aspect of the relationship. Rather, it is the consistent time spent together, laughing, talking, sharing, and learning that makes the relationship strong.
These relationships continue to grow and develop as the child matures, some lasting for many years, even a lifetime. It is not at all unusual to hear Bigs remark that they have received as much from the friendship as their Little has. There is a special gratification that is found in watching a child develop self-confidence, learn new skills, make smart choices, and try new things. All of these developments enable these children to approach their lives with joy and hope.
Big Brothers Big Sisters makes a Big difference in Big ways. There is no other program in Archuleta County that offers this type of mentoring and can document results in such an effective way. It is a program worthy of your time and your support. There are a number of children who are approaching school with a much better outlook this year because they have a Big support system!
For more information about Big Brothers Big Sisters or to make a contribution, call 264-5077, or visit our website at www.bbig.org.