Originally Published in Colchester Weekly

Dec 21, 2017

The Need for Male Mentors Greater than Ever

Here at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Colchester we feel very grateful for all our mentors who contribute an invaluable amount to our organization. A sad fact you might not be aware of is that less than 30% of those mentors are male. With more than 50 little brothers waiting on the sidelines we need more men!

Mary Samson, Program Coordinator for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Colchester has this to say about our need for more male mentors, “Unfortunately the numbers do speak for themselves here. We have far more female mentors then we do male. All the current mentors are wonderful; we simply need more of them. We have many boys who are waiting for a Big Brother or in-school mentor, and we hope that we will see lots of men step up in the New Year to answer this need.”

Our caseworker’s spend considerable time ensuring that the right volunteer is matched with the right child. When you become a volunteer you might be pleasantly surprised that you will have lots to say about which child you think will be a good fit for you and your lifestyle. You’ll be asked to weigh in on such factors as the child’s age, personality, interests and other considerations so you’ll get matched with just the right child. Sometimes the best fit might be a cross gender or a Couples Match.

Our Big Couples Program is an opportunity for a couple who is at least 20 years of age and who’s been together for at least one year to be matched with a little brother or sister. This program may be more appealing to those who might find it overwhelming to make this commitment on their own. The Big Couples program gives mentors the flexibility and opportunity to share the responsibility with their significant other and create memories with their little brother or sister that last a lifetime.

Perhaps you don’t feel like you are the right fit to be a mentor. You may just feel like a regular guy but to a child on our wait list you are an everyday hero. We aren’t asking for someone who can move mountains or leap over tall buildings. We simply need someone who will show up for a child. We need someone who will be a light at the end of stressful day. Someone who will make them feel special, important and valued. We need someone who will laugh with them and just have fun.

Pete Dorey, one of our dedicated Big Brothers touched on how becoming a Big Brother has brought joy to his life. “Time sure flies when you’re having fun! From bowling to chicken wrangling to white water rafting and farming, we’ve had a lot of fun over the last couple years.  If you have ever considered becoming a Big Brother or Sister, do it! I can’t recommend it enough. Going into this I knew I would be given the opportunity to make a difference in someone else’s life, but I never considered the positive impact this would have on my own life.”

If we only we had more guys like Pete! Start your New Year off in the right direction by becoming an everyday superhero for a little brother. We can’t promise you’ll be wrangling chickens but we know there will be lots of smiles and laughter.