Worcester, MA – Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Mass/ MetroWest (BBBSCM), an organization serving youth in the local community, currently has 60 local children waiting for a volunteer mentor. Yet, as of April 1, 2017, only 11 mentors are signed up and ready to volunteer. With nearly 6 times the number of children than there are mentors, kids on the waitlist will wait up to 500 days to be matched with their Big Brother or Big Sister.
The greatest need at BBBSCM is for male mentors. While female volunteers frequent the BBBSCM office, male volunteers are rare. As of April 1st, 42 of the 60 children waiting are boys and not a single one of the 11 volunteers waiting is a male.
Angela Martano, Director of Community programs at BBBSCM explained, “We have a waitlist to get onto the waitlist because so many families want to enroll their children. We sometimes have no choice but to turn kids away, and it’s heartbreaking.”
This great need for mentors at BBBSCM exists specifically in the Community Mentoring Program where volunteers, or “Bigs,” take a child, or “Little,” out in the local community once a week to spend one on one time together. Children in this program need a mentor because they face some type of adversity. Each child’s challenges are unique, but whether facing poverty, lacking a consistent role model, or struggling academically and socially, they each can benefit by having a mentor to lean on.
“Being a mentor is really about having fun,” stated Jeff Chin, CEO at BBBSCM. “This is a unique volunteer opportunity because it allows you to be a kid again. It isn’t a chore; our mentors genuinely look forward to their time with their Littles and grow to care for them like family.”
To learn more about becoming a Big Brother or Big Sister, please visit the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Mass/ MetroWest website at bbbscm.org/volunteer. For more information, contact Jackie Lyon, Jackie.Lyon@bbbscm.org.