Many of our Bigs are Cardinals, too! Those who are staying in town for Ball State's spring break have plenty of kid-friendly match activities to enjoy quality time together.
Many of our Bigs are Cardinals, too! Those who are staying in town for Ball State's spring break have plenty of kid-friendly match activities to enjoy quality time together.
Big Brother and his Little have been matched through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County for six years. Throughout their match, the Big has noticed the instability that his Little has endured. He has been passed between his mother, father and other relatives to live.
To the Big Brother and his wife, his Little is like a third son and an older brother to his two boys. The boys always want him to spend time with their family. And this past Christmas he did. Per tradition, on Christmas day, Big's mother is referred to as “Grandma Claus” because she always gives all the kids’ presents. And this year, Grandma Claus added someone special to her list, Big’s Little. Confused as to why Grandma Claus was so generous to him, Little looked at her and asked, “Why?” She responded simply, “Because you’re family.”
The Big and his Little are not just a BBBS Match, they are family. Youth in our community are given an opportunity because of people like this Big. He has been an outstanding member of Muncie and an amazing Big Brother at BBBS. He and his Little have spent the last six years learning and growing with one another.
BBBS’s mission is to create life changing friendships. While we expect our work to be life changing for the children we serve, our volunteers lives are often changed as well. It is our 2018 goal to serve 100 youth in the Muncie community. With your help we can reach that goal. So join the hundreds of thousands of volunteers that give a young person someone to look up to. And learn why so many volunteers are now saying, “I get back so much more than I give.”
Mentoring Coordinator, Andrea Eads, has been working to highlight goal setting with our new matches based on the long-term goals of helping our Littles grow into adults with confidence, competence, and caring relationships.
Goals related to having Confidence include:
Goals related to Competency include:
Goals related to Caring Relationships include:
One of our new matches started in December, Ashley and Willow, are off to a great start! Ashley is faithful, fun, and very intentional. Within the first two months, this Big Sister has already touched on each of the set goals of:
* Working together to develop a successful relationship with each other.
Willow’s mom, Anna, said that Ashley has done a great job planning ahead, texting to confirm before the match outing, and communicating clearly about when they will be back. Good communication helps build trust with everyone.
* Attitude toward school and learning. Willow and Ashley set the goal to go learn together. Willow mentioned that she would enjoy going to a museum sometime.Ashley did a great job considering the goals set in her planning, and has taken Willow to the Muncie Children’s Museum and to the Ball State Planetarium together. The museum has free and half off days every month, and the planetarium shows are always free.
* Have Interests or Hobbies. Willow and her mom said that Willow was interested in gain skills and experience in crafting and food preparation. Since Ashley and Willow are still in their first three months, they are not approved to have home visits yet. Ashley did a great job of working around what could have been an obstacle by planning ahead and bringing craft materials for a project to the matches outing to the public library.
In addition to focusing on their personal goals, Ashley followed the program suggestion and showed support to Willow by attending her belting ceremony for Ju-Jitsu at Cornerstone Center for the Arts.
Both mother, Anna, and the Big Sister, Ashley, filled out a survey saying that they had a great experience getting enrolled with Big Brothers Big Sisters, and we are so glad. We are so glad that BBBS has been able to help Willow make a life-changing friendship where she can grow in being able to trust, have fun, and set long and short-term goals as she transitions into her pre-teen years.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County provides children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever. Creating life-changing friendships is the core of BBBS’ work. We are so grateful to the volunteers, parents and children we serve, and to our sponsors for providing the funds to do our life-changing work.
Books & Brews has concocted a specialty beer just for our fundraiser. Come sit back, drink a pint and learn more about Dance For Kids' Sake with us this Friday!
January is National Mentoring Month, and we're feeling quite appreciative.
I'm not sure I've been this excited about flipping the calendar since 1999! I'd love to tell you a bit about why I'm so excited to say Hello to 2018!
By 2019, we plan to double our mentor matches. This means we will say to hello to an even larger number of Littles and Bigs in 2018. Which in turn means our team needs to grow!
In 2018, we will say hello to at least two new staff members!
If you're interested in joining our team or in learning more about the 2017 goodbyes and 2018 hellos, please read on...
We hope our matches enjoy some of the amazing local festivities this season. Happy holidays from BBBS!
It's hard to believe that 2017 is almost over. As we count down the days until the new year, we want to take a moment to reflect upon all the growth and activity that took place during the whirlwind that was the past 12 months.
To begin, our funding for Art for Kids' Sake and Dance for Kids' Sake was increased (thanks to all those who attended!) We also had the opportunity to work with the Facing the Future: Mentoring in Muncie project, which teamed us with organizations that have roles in building mentor-mentee relationships in Muncie! The collaboration continued as the BSU Comm Club, Starbucks, the Bahai Center, businesses, churches, and other community groups worked with us to celebrate Halloween, Christmas, and Valentine’s events with youth in our community. The fraternity brothers from the Ball State chapter of Alpha Sigma Epsilon raised an amazing $14,800 for us through campus events such as their annual Spike Fest. To further understand the impact of their fundraising for BBBS, two Sig Ep members joined our board under honorary status.
Our team also welcomed two fantastic new mentor coordinators, Andrea Eads and Stephanie Wallace. These hardworking ladies have a genuine passion for service and have quickly caught on to their new roles with smarts and skill. Having them around the office has been a joy.
We deeply appreciate all of the organizations and individuals that showed support for our programs this year. Their time and financial support makes our team's work possible, and that work will only continue to grow and serve more children in the coming year.
It's Thanksgiving week, and we here at BBBS have a lot to be grateful for. We checked the numbers, and our total revenue from Art for Kids' Sake last Saturday was $12,290.20. If you attended, donated, sponsored, exhibited, or contributed in any other way, we're so grateful to you! This funding helps us keep our programs running and improve them so that we can meet the needs of the Littles in our area. It's so inspiring to have a community that supports our efforts and shares our vision.
A special thank-you to our AFKS 2017 sponsors: Meridian (Gold), Mutual Bank (Gold), Pizza King (Gold), Ivy Tech Community College (Silver), Bethel Pointe Rehab (Bronze), Estep, Burkey, Simmons (Bronze), Gill Brothers Furniture (Bronze), Indiana Trust (Bronze), Lykins Counseling Clinic (Bronze), Northwest Towing (Bronze), & Suding Family Dentistry (Bronze).
Those readers who live in the Muncie area are probably familiar with Minnetrista, a community gathering place where individuals and families can develop relationships through educational experiences. The museum is always filled with interesting exhibits (I highly recommend everyone check out the current Ball Jar Canning exhibit!) and the beautiful grounds offer a space for public events and outdoor adventures. We here at BBBS are delighted to announce that Minnetrista has made available to our Bigs and Littles the opportunity to participate in Museums for All. This program, which launched in October, resulted from a collaboration between the Association of Children's Museums and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Participating families receive a renewable 12-month membership from Minnetrista for $5, which is the usual price for a one-time, individual entry to the museum. Rebecca Gillam, the Vice President of Visitor Experiences at Minnetrista, was generous to lend me some of her time to explain how Minnetrista decided to participate in MFA and explain what their dreams are for its impact in Muncie.
What does Minnetrista membership offer to our Bigs and Littles? Turns out, quite a lot. "As a member, you’re an insider," Gillam explains. "You know first what’s going on in our institution, and you have access to all of our programs, activities, and events. Membership is about feeling like you’re a part of our family, that we’re available to you, and that you can enjoy everything we offer to the fullest." Upcoming events include this Saturday's indoor farmer's market and exhibits like December's "Imagination Playground," which is a definite kid-pleaser. Gillam particularly recommends Minnetrista's beautiful backyard and gardens. "The Oakhurst space in particular is so fun for imaginative play and family-togetherness time," she says. "And if the weather’s not great I would spend my time inside at one of our exhibitions or the cabin we open a couple times a week. It’s such a fun play space—there are lots of games and activities. It’s a great getaway." As for exhibits? "After we get through the holidays, we’re opening an exciting new exhibition in February—a dinosaur exhibit! Dinosaurs are coming!" You heard it here first.
Why $5? "It’s not about how Minnetrista benefits," says Gillam. "We are a hub and anchor for the entire community and want to make sure everyone who desires access to the Minnetrista experience has it. $5 seemed like a very reasonable price for a family for a year of membership. There is value in what Minnetrista offers, and we want the participants to feel empowered by their purchase of a membership while still breaking down the barrier of price. We really appreciate that they are prioritizing the education and community that Minnetrista provides.”
When considering who would benefit most from participating in Museums for All, Minnetrista wanted to cater to Muncie organizations that strive to serve families and develop relationships in our community. Gillam herself has spent about a month extending MFA information to social services like libraries to make Muncie more aware about this opportunity. So far, so good. The community has been receptive as far as positive feedback. Now Minnetrista just wants more participants, which is where we're hoping our Bigs and Littles will come in! Their decision to reach out to us makes it possible for us to extend to our fantastic volunteers and their families a space for them to play and learn together-- exactly the kind of quality time we know they seek out. Gillam says, "We want our space to be the go-to place for families or mentors and mentees to come spend time together. Our hope is to create a positive impact in their lives and relationships." We have to agree!
If you're interested in learning more about Minnetrista, their website is informative.
This page has more to say about Museums for All as a national program.
Many thanks to Rebecca Gillam for her interview, to Minnetrista for making this opportunity possible, and to our lovely readers. Thanks for taking the time to keep up with us!
Have a Roarin' good time at Saturday's Art for Kids' Sake event at MadJax supporting Big Brothers Big Sisters! Join us at 6:30pm for drinks and bites served up while makers share their secrets and award winning acapella groups capture your fancy. Bring your doll (or your guy) and dance the night away...
Our new location offers many benefits. One is enough space to be a place where everyone is welcome. Come join us & learn more about the work we do.
MUNCIE, Ind.– Join Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County (BBBS) on Oct. 5 to celebrate their new office opening at 119 E Charles St. The open house is from 5:00pm to 8:00 p.m. and there is a ribbon cutting ceremony at 5:30 p.m.
Cheese and wine is available for adults and there is a scavenger hunt for Bigs and Littles and anyone else who wants to participate.
Sue Godfrey, Executive Director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County says, “We are thrilled to be back in the space which was our home in the 1980s and 1990s. We are better able to connect with the youth and families we serve by being located in the center of thriving downtown Muncie.”
If you would like more information, please contact Sue Godfrey at 765-284-4141, email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the website at www.bbbsmuncie.org.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County, founded in 1971, has served more than 4,300 children locally. Our mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported 1-to-1 relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.
Sara & Felicia just joined the BBBS team and we are excited to have them both here with us for the semester. Both of them are Ball State students and are ready to gain new experiences and make a positive impact at BBBS.
Sara is our new Event Planning Intern. She is a Junior, Public Relations major. She is very excited to start this new position and cannot wait to see where this year and organization takes her! She will be helping with our upcoming event Art for Kids' Sake. Find out how you can get involved.
Felicia is our new Administrative Assistant. She is a Junior, with a major in Political Science and a minor in Criminal Justice. She has always been passionate about mentoring and is excited to get started!
Stephanie grew up in Anderson, Indiana. She earned her Bachelor's degree in Nursing from Indiana Wesleyan University. She is currently pursuing a dual Master's degree in Adult and Community Education and Executive Leadership for Public Service. Stephanie worked in Nurse Management in the Muncie Community and surrounding areas for many years.
Stephanie became more aware of Big Brothers Big Sisters when her oldest daughter began volunteering as a Big Sister here in Muncie. She always had the desire to impact the lives of others in a meaningful way. She recently joined the BBBS team as a Mentoring Coordinator.
She is excited to begin her journey with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware County. The thing she looks forward to the most about her new role is working with the children, their families, and the volunteers in order to have a positive lasting effect on the lives of each of them.
Andrea grew up in Ohio, until she ventured to Ball State to earn her bachelor’s degree in Journalism. After working in communications and hospitality for a number of years, she was able to do freelance graphic design and stay home with her three children. Through volunteer work at her local church and in education circles, Andrea renewed a love for learning and working with children and parents.
Andrea’s first experience with Big Brothers Big Sisters was when she and her husband were asked to participate as dancers at Dance for Kids’ Sake in 2016. It was such a fun event, and it opened her eyes to the active, intentional work of BBBS.
Mentors had a huge impact on Andrea in different phases of life, and she is thrilled to help facilitate opportunities for others to make life-changing intentional friendships. She thinks it takes a lot of insight and courage for a parent to seek out new opportunities and empowering relationships for their children, and she is so glad Big Brothers Big Sisters is there to partner with them.
Through Andrea’s time volunteering in multiple roles, she knows getting started can feel intimidating. She is excited to help Big volunteers get started with BBBS. She really believes their lives will be enriched as they share what has been invested into them and learn together with their Little. We are grateful to have Andrea join the BBBS team as a Mentoring Coordinator.
They met as strangers 13 years ago. Now, they are sisters.
Leslie Parker has been involved with BBBS for 13 years. Leslie says, “I joined the program because a friend of mine was a BBBS employee and she encouraged me to get involved.” After joining, she was matched with Kathlene, who was 10 years old. They have been sisters ever since.
When Haidyn met Rachel for the first time, she says, “I was going through a tomboy phase and Rachel brought out a personality in me that I didn’t know existed.” Haidyn is happy to have someone to talk to and hang out with. Before she was matched with Rachel, she only had her brother to hang out with, now she has a friend, mentor and Big Sister! She added, “Rachel has a sweet personality and a kind heart. I love her!”
One of my very favorite simple pleasures is climbing into bed with clean sheets. It's something I savor each Saturday night, after we've done the weekly cleaning, a tradition I've carried into my family from my childhood. Something I thought all families did. But this week, I have a whole new thought about pajamas and climbing into fresh sheets after talking to Clark, our copy repair man.
What made you want to work with BBBS?
When I was a graduate assistant, I worked in youth & family programs. I absolutely loved my experience and I missed it. I wanted to move back toward working in that area. I was lucky that the job position opened up when I needed it!
What is your favorite part of your job as a Program Coordinator?
I love many aspects of my job. My favorite things are interviewing children, volunteers, and matching them. Regardless of how many times I ask the same questions, I constantly get new answers from the children that are always entertaining.
I love getting to know the volunteers. The type of people that come into the program wanting to volunteer to be Bigs are absolutely incredible. I am honored that they share their life story with me and I get to learn from them.
After that, I truly enjoy the Big and Little meeting each other for the first time. When they are matched, they are both excited to meet each other and a little shy. It is wonderful to see them both grow together in such a short period of time.
Can you talk about a mentor that you had growing up?
I had many mentors growing up that invested their time and effort and impacted me in different ways. One of my early mentors was a middle school teacher named Mrs. M. She was also my track and cross country coach. She was always a strong female role model that was positive and encouraging during my middle school and high school years.
About a year ago, I wrote her a letter about how much I admired her character and looked up to her growing up. She wrote a letter back. She has two twin girls and she wrote that she hopes they grow up to be like me.
That statement has had a profound impact on my outlook for the future and the way I live my life. I want those girls to have amazing opportunities, a fulfilling life, and reach their full potential. I want the absolute best for them. I don't want them to miss out on a second of having a life that they love and achieving their dreams. Not only did Mrs. M have a positive impact on my life, but her daughters have too. I want to live as a role model that empowers the girls to be anything they want to be and live a life that they love.
Laura is a passionate employee that cares a lot for other people. Her work in the organization is vital to the success of Big Brothers Big Sisters' mission: changing the lives for the better, forever. We are lucky to have her brilliant mind on our team. Thank you so much, Laura!