Chris (14) was enrolled in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program in August of 2010. At the time, school was a struggle for Chris. His mother, Jeanette, hoped that a mentor could provide support and encouragement to Chris. During his interview, Chris, who comes from a one-parent home, was asked, “Is there a special adult (not your parent or guardian) who you enjoy spending time with?” Chris answered, “No.” The need for a caring mentor for Chris was apparent, but due to a lack of male volunteers, Chris was placed on the waiting list.
Brian (30) signed up to be a mentor in April of 2012. Brian came from a supportive family with many additional mentors, and he was hoping to provide that same support to someone else.
In June of 2012, nearly two years after Chris was initially enrolled in the program, Brian and Chris were introduced to each other. Over the course of the summer, Brian made sure to participate in fun activities with Chris that would help build friendship and trust. By August, Chris was calling Brian to initiate their outings. In September, the two competed in a BBBS basketball tournament at Franklin College. They were able to tour the campus afterward and Brian shared, “Chris could not stop talking about how excited he was to attend college someday.”
As their relationship grew stronger, so did Chris’ confidence. Chris and Brian spoke on the phone often and Jeanette noticed that Chris was, “much happier since
meeting Brian.” She explained that Chris was, “better able to control his anger and seemed to be angry less often.” By the end of the school year, Chris’ grades had improved and Chris exclaimed, “Being around someone like Brian just makes me happy. Brian is like a real brother, and I can’t stay away from the guy!”
Brian and Chris reached their one year anniversary in June of 2013. When their Match Support Specialist, Jon Carolin, asked the same question Chris was asked during his interview nearly two years before, “Is there a special adult (not your parent or guardian) who you enjoy spending time with?” Chris answered with a resounding, “Yes! Brian!”
100 Men in 50 Days campaign
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana has kicked off it’s 100 Men in 50 Days campaign. Now through May 26, men are needed to step up and become Big Brothers, Big Friends, and Big Couples. Visit www.bebigforkids.org or contact Jarod Wilson, Volunteer Outreach & Engagement Manager, to sign up today.