Want a rewarding, meaningful volunteer experience unlike any other? Give the invaluable gift of your friendship and become a Big Brother, Big Sister, or Big Couple today.
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Your questions, answered.
We’re here to help you every step of the way. View a full list of commonly asked questions to get the information you need. Contact us if you have additional questions.
Bigs and Littles are encouraged to get together at least two to four times a month for a total of around 4 hours during days and times that work for both parties. We recommend that Bigs keep a consistent schedule of outings and to keep communication going on a regular basis.
Anything you like. Activities are up to each Match to schedule and participate in on their own time. You don’t have to spend a lot of money, it’s about the time. Common activities include going to get ice cream or going to a movie, playing catch or a video game, attending a sporting event or concert, hanging out at home and making dinner or running errands. We encourage Bigs to share time instead of trying to create new time. Bring your Little on activities you were already going to do. Keep it simple and focus on getting to know each other. We also host great match activities and parties that all Bigs/Littles are invited to. Our Bigs are also occasionally given free tickets to events.
A Big Couple is a pair of Bigs who are in a long-term relationship and want to be matched together to the same Little Brother. Big Couples do not have to be married, but must be in a long-term relationship. Big Family is a similar match that incorporates your own children into the relationship with the Little Brother. This a great option for couples and families that would prefer a shared experience as opposed to each of them having their own Little. We want our Bigs to integrate their Little into their lives and this often means your Little spending a lot of time with your family and friends. The benefit of a Big Couple and Big Family is now both Bigs have the option of going out one-on-one with their Little OR all three can go on outings together. Our Big Couples and Big Families love the flexibility this gives their Match.
Your volunteer interview is a critical part to helping us get to know you, your background, your preferences for your volunteer experience as well as the program best suited for you. Factors that go into the matching process include: personalities, likes, dislikes, age preferences, background, and location. Our team will call you with an in-depth profile of children they think would make a good match, but the final decision is yours to decide if you think the child would be the best fit for your Little. With over 100 years of creating friendships, we have truly perfected the matching process and pride ourselves on carefully-selected, safe, and quality matches.
Yes! BBBS only enrolls children who want and need the program and whose parents and guardians want them in the program. Whether they heard about our mentoring programs from a teacher, counselor, church, friend, or media, parents and guardians want the very best for their children and have entrusted us to find the safest, most suitable mentor to place in their lives. Guardians are integral in the success of the overall relationship, and many say the mentoring match has not only changed their child’s life but it’s positively impacted the entire family as well. 100% of the children enrolled are ready and excited about being matched.
Mentoring is a free program for both Bigs and Littles. We invite Bigs to help cover the full or partial cost of their background checks to help us stretch donors dollars to serve more children on our waiting list. Bigs often spend some money on activities with their Littles, however we strongly encourage no-cost or low-cost activities. Bigs receive an email with a list of fun, free activities to do together and when available, tickets and special offers for community events and sports games!
In the beginning it is important for you and your Little to get to know each other on a one-to-one basis. Over time it is also valuable for your Little to get to know the people who are important to you. Keep in mind that if you’re spending lots of time with others your Little may begin to feel jealous or neglected. Remember that the main focus is the friendship YOU have with your Little.
Absolutely. All Bigs are required to go through a pre-match training to prepare you for your new mentor relationship. Once you’re matched, you’ll be assigned a Match Support Specialist who will be in regular contact with you to provide assistance and give feedback every step of the way. Anytime you are unsure about what to do or how to handle a situation, your Match Support Specialist is there to help.
We do everything in our power to make a Match that we think will last. However, we realize that sometimes things come up, Bigs or Littles move, situations change or something doesn’t work out. We will attempt to mediate the situation, but if it doesn’t work out, we will end the Match. If this happens, your Match Support Specialist will be there to support you every step of the way and handle it in the best way possible.