It’s that time of year when a few things are on our mind. For me, I think a lot about my family and the good people in my life or who have been part of my life, like my mentors. I have mentioned a few times on my blog that I grew up in a tough neighborhood on Chicago’s South Side. My parents worked very hard to make sure that I had everything that I needed to succeed in school and to stay out of trouble; however, they like many parents can always use an extra hand in these tasks. I was fortunate that, through my school and community activities, I met some wonderful women who became wonderful examples to me. My young brother and sister also share similar stories. The mentors provided and incredible resource to us – surely helping us navigate the challenges of living where we did and instead focusing on our talents and dreams.
Did you have a mentor in your life who had a positive influence in your life? How did they help you? As the new year approached many of us start to think about our personal resolutions, usually focused on what we are going to “give up” or change in our life. How about this upcoming New Year you consider becoming a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters?
At Big Brothers Big Sisters their goal is to match volunteer mentors (Bigs) with children, (Littles). Do you know what? Latino youth need our help more than ever. Big Brothers Big Sisters need a few good good hombres y mujeres to serve as role models to our youth. When I found out that one of my mentors grew up in the same neighborhood but had so much success in her life, I was really moved. To meet and know women who were living their dreams despite growing up in a tough neighborhood was really motivating. If they could it, I thought, so could I. More importantly, these mentors were now working with kids just like them, as mentors!
Essentially, Big Brothers Big Sisters changes lives. Compared to children not in our program, “Littles” are LESS likely to:
- Skip school
- Use drugs
- Begin drinking alcohol
- Hit someone
- Why Latino Bigs are so Important
About 20% of the children that they serve are Hispanic – a number on the rise. Yet, only 9% of Bigs are Latino. Also, more than 70% of the children ready and waiting to be matched with a mentor are boys, yet only 3 of 10 volunteer inquiries come from men. I really encourage you to consider becoming a mentor, especially if you had a mentor in your life. I know that we are all busy, but being a mentor is not too time consuming. They also come from all walks of life. This is of my favorite mentoring success stories from Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Want to learn more?
- Big Brothers Big Sisters on YouTube.
- Big Brothers Big Sisters on Facebook.
- Big Brothers Big Sisters on Twitter.
- Go to www.latinobigs.org or www.bigbrothersbigsisters.org for more information