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Big Brothers Big Sisters acts as positive community opportunity

December 12, 2013

Friends of Big Brothers Big Sisters is an on-campus student organization that partners with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northwestern Wisconsin to develop long lasting, positive relationships between young people caring adult mentors.

The Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northwestern Wisconsin agency was founded in 1972 and currently serves hundreds of children each year. The organization also offers competitive internships in marketing, public relations and fund development, according to the official website.

Friends of Big Brothers Big Sisters matches local children with students and community members who dedicate their time to serve as positive role models.

Shannon Regan is the activities coordinator for Friends of Big Brothers Big Sisters, and has been part of the program for the last two years. She said that joining the organization is a great way to get involved by making new friends and having fun.

“Big Brothers Big Sisters is a way to be a positive role model to these young kids and it is so rewarding. I don’t know why everybody doesn’t join,” Regan said. “It’s just so much fun and only four hours a month. Very easy to fit into the busy schedule of a student.”
Friends of Big Brothers Big Sisters offers a wide range of volunteer opportunities. According to its website, volunteers can participate in the lunch buddies program, the University Friends program or the community based program.

The lunch buddy program is when volunteers meet with their little brother or sister in a community elementary or middle school. The University Friends program is when volunteers to meet with their child on campus. The community based program allows volunteers to meet with their child at their own convenience, doing things around the community together.
Leah Ticknor, an Elementary Education major, has been volunteering for Big Brother Big Sisters since January of 2013. She said that she joined because she wanted to make an impact on a child’s life.

“I’m going to school to become a teacher so I thought this program would be great experience for me,” Ticknor said, “I wanted to provide a positive influence on a child’s life who needed a role model to confide in.”

Ticknor said students should volunteer because it is an easy way to give back to the community in a positive way.

“My little and I talk about what is going on in our lives and we do fun activities together like making crafts and playing games. It is worth taking time out of your week because I know we both enjoy it and it makes me feel like I made a difference,” Ticknor said. “There are a lot of kids who need someone in their life that they can talk to outside of their school and family lives.”

To learn more about Friends of Big Brothers Big Sisters or for more information on volunteering, students and community members can visit the OrgSync page or www.bbbsnw.org. Members of the organization will also be at the spring Involvement Fair on Wednesday, Jan. 29.