Big brothers Big Sisters Victoria has been helping vulnerable families across the region for forty years.
But it takes money to run their vital programs.
You can support BBBS at their fifth annual Bowl for Kids’ Sake fundraiser.
“Well, I’m going to throw it to you, Cailyn. What have you liked about hanging out with Claire?”
Bonnie Milbury is the Big Brothers Big Sisters Victoria Mentoring Coordinator.
She’s checking in with Tillicum Elementary grade five student Cailyn and her Big Sister Claire, who are part of the in-school mentoring program.
“The volunteer is really a positive role model for the child. They spend positive interactive time with them, getting to know them.”
“It’s like, one of the highlights of my week, for sure!” says Claire Lee-Radigan. “I love it. I love spending time with Cailyn.”
A UVic psychology student, Claire was learning how lives can implode as challenges increase, but support does not.
“At the same time, we were learning a lot about resiliency, and how even having one key figure, or consistent adult in a kid’s life can really increase and up their resiliency.”
Clair wanted to be that key figure in someone’s life, and approached Big Brothers Big Sisters.
This is her seconnd year spending an hour a week at Cailyn’s elementary school.
“An [in-school mentoring] volunteer comes into the school one hour a week, and mentors one child for the whole school year” explains Milbury.
And BBBS would love to have more volunteers.
“We need Big Brothers Big Sisters, we need in-school mentors, we need people that work in our groups, but in order to support the work that we do, we also need money” says Cindy Tomnuk, Manager of Development for the organization.
Each in-school mentoring match costs $9-hundred dollars a year. A Big Brothers Big Sisters match is $15-hundred dollars annually.
And every year, more than six hundred vulnerable families reach out to BBBS.
“The clothing donation program is a source of funds, and so is Bowl For Kids’ Sake.
“This year” she adds, “our goal is $75,000.”
Money that will enable BBBS to continue the vital work they do, to help kids and families thrive.