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23 Reviews
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May 12, 2012

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May 12, 2012

I am a Big and have been matched with my little for over 2 years. She has brought so much to our partnership and has taught me much about life. We enjoy learning from each other and I look forward to the time we spend together. This organization strives to introduce youth to mentors who can be a positive influence in their life. From organized group activities to one-on-one time together I have nothing but positive words about BBBS.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

January 27, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

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Review from CharityNavigator
January 27, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

I've been a big and my personal experience with my "little" continues to be a great one which has been very rewarding for both of our families. But the disappointing data and troublesome trends for BBBS of SEPA are unfortunately not surprising. In my experience, the organization overreaches on what I assume is most donors expectations: Matching 'littles' with 'bigs' and providing the necessary oversight to protect all involved. It's not understandable how a CEO here could justify a salary of well over $300K for this organization. That there are many volunteers overseeing bigger responsibilities in apparently, a far more efficient manner.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Unsure

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Okay

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Unsure

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

May 3, 2011

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May 3, 2011

Great organization. I am a Big Brother. They did an excellent job of matching me with the perfect Little Brother. We have monthly check-ins with a match support specialist who gives us advice. There are also great activities for us to participate in -- the agency has tickets and discounts for many events. The agency is well run and I've enjoyed my time as a volunteer. (I am also a Board Member, but I'm writing this review about my experience as a volunteer.)

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I'm getting as much out of it as my Little Brother. It's a reason to have fun, act young and ideally make an impact on someone.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Get them more money, so more kids on the waiting list could get Big Brothers and Big Sisters.

May 1, 2011

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May 1, 2011

I wish more people could experience attending an annual Big Brothers Big Sisters award dinner and hear from the Little Brother and Little Sister of the Year about how much they enjoyed the program. Listening to the comments from the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of the year really make you aware of how important this program can be in your community for your children.

Having been a Big Sister for over six years, I can truly say that this is a most valuable program for our country. While attending the high school graduation of my Little Sister, I read her positive comments in her yearbook regarding having a Big Sister.

I became a Big SIster when I was 37 years old, after seeing an article in a local newspaper. I've made lifelong friends from attending the various events with my Little Sister, which were held by the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Lehigh Valley organization and were of great importance to my Little Sister in many ways: meeting new people, experiencing new places, etc.

Needless to say, if I won the lottery, I would definitely give a big chunk of it to Big Brothers Big Sisters!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

...the way it POSITIVELY effects the life of a Little Sister or Little Brother FOREVER.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

...make sure it receives as much funding as possible, for the good it does in the life of a girl or boy who benefit from having a role model to help them in growing to be a mature, responsible individual in this great country of ours.

April 30, 2011

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April 30, 2011

Big Brothers Big Sisters has been a tremendous resource for children who need someone to be a consistent, positive role model in their lives. I've seen three girls grow their confidence, education and social abilities thanks to Big Brothers Big Sisters.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

watching my little sisters grow their confidence, education and social abilities.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

provide even more group activities for matches - though they do a nice amount of this already

April 29, 2011

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April 29, 2011

This organization brings out the light in children through adults who care enough to say "You can do it." I was matched May of 2007. The program, Native American Scholars, was brand new at BBBS of the Sioux Empire, and created to increase graduation rates among Native students. I felt the program called to me; being Native myself, and struggled through most of life, I could see easily how mentoring could make a difference in a child's life. My Little, Tiffany, has just turned 14, and was quite the firecracker. We had a lot of rough starts; she was from an impoverished and broken family, with minimal hope of overcoming heavy obstacles. If she made it to 12th grade - heck, if she made it to 10th grade - it would be a means to celebrate. To say it bluntly, I had no clue how I was going to help this kid. I had been a troubled youth myself, but under totally different circumstances. Still, four years later, I look back on our time together and she has out-distanced every expectation placed upon her. She'll graduate in 19 days (yes, we're on a daily count-down). She'll be 18 in just over a week. To say that I'm proud of her is putting it mildly; she's watched her friends drop out of school, or get pregnant, or go to jail. More than one has committed suicide. She's gone through juvenile detention, rape crisis, counseling... And yet she'll walk across the stage at her graduation as one of the few high school graduates and the only college matriculator in her immediate family (she'll attend Dakota State University beginning this summer!!!!!). She's made it. She'll tell you she never would have made it this far without me, but that's not true. She always had it in her. If I've done anything, it's that I've pointed out the obvious and been the broken record: "You can do it." My job in all this has been pretty easy. It's Tiffany who has shined. If all a kid needs to hear in life to accomplish goals is "You can do it," then I see no reason why more volunteers can't come forth to help a child realize his or her potential. Big Brothers Big Sisters was the catalyst that connected Tiffany and me together for life. They provided realistic advice that kept our relationship functioning, even through the bad times, and offered valuable resources (counseling, school supplies, test fees, etc.) to Tiffany when her guardians or I were unable. I am thankful for the opportunity they provided.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have worked for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sioux Empire since March 2008, nearly a year after I began volunteering for the organization. I had been working as a newspaper reporter/photographer, and was asked by the previous program manager to fill her role as she took a local teaching position. I didn't hesitate to say yes. Helping children to see the light inside themselves is a job I'm thankful to have each and every day. That I am able to mentor a beautiful young adult is a bonus.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Provide more supervised group activities (including transportation/meals) for youth when their mentors/parents are unable to participate. Currently, mentors are required to spend just 2-4 hours (at a minimum) with a child each month and are often time-starved, multi-leveled individuals who can't spend more than that. These kids need more positive interaction, and a safe, secure, group-mentoring aspect is highly needed for at-risk youth.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

Recognition rewards/incentives. Honoring banquet/dinners.

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Of course. I have a lifelong "Little Sister" in Tiffany.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

Needed. Valuable.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

April 29, 2011

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April 29, 2011

I became a Little Sister in the program at age 7 in 1985. Having a Big Sister changed my life. Being a child of a single mother struggling to make a living, times were rough. It was hard to concentrate on school when you were worried about what and if you would eat that evening. I was a C student at best and never had any hope of going to college. I was told I was not a good enough student and I defenitley wasn't rich enough to pay for college. My Big Sister gave me the self confidence I needed to succeed and told me I could do anything I put my mind to. Thanks to her I have met many of my goals. Because of my own childhood experience I decided to become a Big Sister myself, hoping to have a positive impact on another child's life. Happily my time as a Big has been just as rewarding, if not more so, than my time was as a Little.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have grown my self confidence and achieved many of my life long goals. Had the wonderful satisfaction of helping another child achieve their own goals.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

If I had to change anything I would not stop until every child on the waiting list had their own mentor.

April 29, 2011

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April 29, 2011

I have just been matched with my second Little Brother. My first match lasted 4.5 years and was so much fun I decided to do it again. I really love the fact that I can use mentoring my Little as an excuse when I go out to have fun.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My first match ended shorly before it was scheduled to on my Little's 18th birthday because he felt he had outgrown the need for our activities but that didn't detract from all the time we had spent together.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Local agencies can make their own policies on overnight activities and my only regret is that the Milwaukee agency prohibits all of them. It's a little disappointing to think of all the opportunites my little will miss out on because of that rule.

April 29, 2011

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April 29, 2011

I have been a Big Sister for nearly 10 years with the same match. Yesterday, she turned 17. We have one more year to be a "match" but we plan on being "sisters" forever. She even talks about being a big & things she wants to do with her little. Even about doing 3-generation stuff once in a while.
People always talk about what a blessing being a big is for the little. But, I have found that being a big is a huge blessing for me as well. I look forward to my time with my little. Even when we don't have big plans & we just watch a movie and talk I am just happy to be with her. Just seeing her lifts my spirits every time.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Being with my little sister & watching her grow.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Make it more accessible to people in Skagit County

April 29, 2011

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April 29, 2011

I have been matched with my little for 6 months now. It has been a very rewarding program. My little and I enjoy many activities. Including bowling, playing board games, talking, watching movies and much more. One of the most amazing things about the program is how accurate the matching is. She is an absolute delight and a perfect match for me!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

happiness. It is a great experience to mentor someone and know that you are helping a child.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Nothing.

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