Residents of Jacksonville have the opportunity to get involved in Big Brothers-Big Sisters even if they have a busy work schedule. Big Brothers-Big Sisters of Central Illinois has launched an initiative to recruit 50 mentors in 30 days in the month of September through their Mentor 2.0 program.
Brian Ganz of Big Brothers-Big Sisters of Central Illinois says it’s an easy program to get involved in to be a mentor to young students at Southeast High School in Springfield: “Now, this is not your typical Big Brothers-Big Sisters volunteer opportunity. It is curriculum based, so we talk to the kids that are in the program, and we have a lesson that we teach them every week. It allows the high school student to communicate with their volunteer virtually. Basically, it’s in an email format that we have set up. Every week your role as a mentor is simply to respond to your Little’s email. Then, once a month, we have an event at Southeast High School that people attend, as well. It normally starts at 5:30PM, so if you work in Springfield, you can stop by after work on your way home to have a party.”
This is the second year of the program and Ganz says that mentors from last year said it didn’t take too much time out of their schedule. Ganz went on to say with it being a curriculum-based program, it helps mentors who are in the school or community programs find out what works and what doesn’t with littles.
On Thursday, September 1st from 5:30-7:30PM at Anvil & Forge Brewery in Springfield, the Mentor 2.0 program is having a kick off event. Ganz says last year’s successful program caused it to double in size this year: “Last year, we had 25 matches. This year the number of kids participating has jumped up to 46 plus we have some additional kids who are joining from last year’s class. There’s about 50 mentors that we need to recruit within the next month and a half. We’re going heavy with trying to get those recruited in Springfield.”
If you are looking to be a part of Mentor 2.0 and would like to visit the kick-off event, you can RSVP by calling Derek Haggard at 217-753-1216 or email email@example.com. For more information about Big Brothers-Big Sisters of Central Illinois, visit their website at bbbscil.org.