Meet Jenny & Musandi: Match of the Year Honorees

Each year Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Central Indiana honors our “Matches of the Year”. We had 10 matches of the year in 2021, and each of these matches was interviewed for a series of short videos.  

 Big Sister Jenny and Little Sister Musandi have been matched since August of 2019.

We weren’t able to fit everything into the Match of the Year videos, so here’s a deeper look into one of 2021’s strongest matches!    

Jenny became a Big because she doesn’t have kids, but “has a lot of love to give”. She certainly has been giving that love out, but she has also been getting a lot back from her friendship with Musandi. Because the two of them have such similar interests, Jenny shared that she “always has a date” to do fun stuff with. One of their favorite memories was a trip they took to the zoo where they were able to swim with the dolphins. Musandi shared that the dolphins were super fun and cute, and her experience there inspired an interest in becoming a marine biologist. 

Both of them noted how much Musandi has grown over the last few years. In Jenny’s words, “She’s definitely come into her own, even her fashion sense. She’s gone from wearing what her mom picked out to choosing cute outfits. She’s got style.” Beyond style, Musandi is much more comfortable socially than she was before being matched with Jenny. While at a baseball game, Musandi told Jenny that she wanted to go chat with some of the players who were standing on the sidelines. Jenny said, “well, go then!”, and she went. She chatted with them about the game and asked for tips she can use when playing softball. As that was happening, Jenny shared that she was sitting back and thinking, “wow. There she is. All grown up.” 

Musandi her own growth too. Before being matched, she saw herself as “antisocial” and “scared to talk to people”. Now she is “not scared to talk to anyone” and feels comfortable engaging and making eye contact. She credits a lot of that growth to Jenny’s influence. Musandi said, “Jenny is a very bright, hyper person, and I got some of that from her.” 

At the end of the conversation, we asked Musandi what advice she would give to herself from 2 years ago if she had the chance. I think her answer is good advice for lots of us. She said, “Get out of the house. Don’t be scared to talk to people. Don’t be afraid that people don’t like you, or that you’re talking too much. Just keep going.” 

There are over 1,000 kids like Musandi on our waitlist. They’re waiting for a mentor, for someone to stand in their corner. Learn more about how you could make an impact like Jenny as a Big.    

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