Big Brothers / Big Sisters - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 09-20-2004, 05:03 PM
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Does anyone volunteer as a big brother or big sister? I'm going to do it. Just wondered what kind of experiences other people have had.

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#2 Old 09-20-2004, 05:12 PM
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Is it some sort of scheme? I "adopt" people as my family- but have never voluntered. The people I adopt tend to be friends or friends family- so it doesn't count. But it's nice to have 3 mums and lots of siblings!



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#3 Old 09-20-2004, 08:58 PM
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Weird! I actually spent some time today researching this because it's something I've wanted to get involved in for a long time.



That's sooooo cool of you Michael! I think you'll be a great influence on a child who may need somebody to look up to. Best of luck.
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#4 Old 09-20-2004, 09:01 PM
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I've wanted to for a long time and someone's finally gotten me motivated to do it. Should be a lot of fun. I'm not sure if I'm going to tell my sister though cause I'm afraid she'll be jealous.

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#5 Old 09-20-2004, 09:53 PM
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I'll let you know! I'm just beginning to mentor a child who has an incarcerated parent. I meet her tomorrow!
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#6 Old 09-20-2004, 09:56 PM
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#7 Old 09-20-2004, 10:17 PM
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It's a great program! I did this a few years ago, also for a kid who had a mom in prison. This was when I was in school, but we still keep in touch.



They are always needing more guys to volunteer around here..I'm sure it's the same all over.



Yay Michael!

The ones I pity are the ones who never stick out their neck for something they believe, never know the taste of moral struggle, and never have the thrill of victory. - Jonathan Kozol
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#8 Old 09-21-2004, 01:22 AM
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no. but i've seen the documentary "stevie".



oh but a good friend (practically MY big-brother) of mine does that just on his own. these two neighborhood rugrats of 8 and 10 have no father and a crackhead mom (seriosly! im not being derogatory). soo sad. anyway he met them by giving them $$ to wash his car, now he takes them to disneyland, the zoo (here in san diego), the park, the beach, the fair, sooo sweet. they've never been to ANY of these places even though all but disney (45 minutes) is about 10 minutes away (zoo is walking distance). he talks to them about drugs and they listen, despite their mom. he is really influencing their lives. all i can say is the happiness in his eyes when he gets "fathersday" cards, etc. is priceless....



have fun!

‎"I just think there's something in being lost. I never feel lost. I just think, 'Oh. I've taken a diversion'." ~ Karl Pilkington
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#9 Old 09-21-2004, 01:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael View Post

Does anyone volunteer as a big brother or big sister? I'm going to do it. Just wondered what kind of experiences other people have had.

I think you'd be great great great as a big brother, Michael!
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#10 Old 09-21-2004, 07:56 AM
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I didn't do it through a program, but I "tutored" a pre-teen girl when I was in college. I worked with her mother. She was from a tough part of town, living with a single parent, from an interracial relationship (not all that common in the area I was in at the time), and didn't have financial advantages that a lot of other kids she was in school with had. She was struggling in school, didn't have a lot of friends, and on the verge of some disciplinary trouble. Her mom was trying anything she could to try to keep her on the right track. So, I used to pick her up after school, work through homework, hang out, chat ~ try to be a positive role model.



Go for it! You'll be great at it.
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#11 Old 09-21-2004, 08:14 AM
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I thought about it, but let's see how badly I mess my own kid up first before I get a crack at another kid.



I do have a lot of respect for anyone who does take the time to mentor children though.
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#12 Old 09-21-2004, 08:29 AM
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I think you'd be great great great as a big brother, Michael!



Aw... thank you.



You should tell your friend who bad-mouthed me! Hmmph. Yeah, I still haven't forgotten that.

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#13 Old 09-21-2004, 08:31 AM
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I think you'd do a great job too. I was all signed up to get started on that myself. And then I got pregnant. So I never did it.
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#14 Old 09-21-2004, 08:32 AM
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Well Michael, It's not every day that a kid can say that God is his big brother!
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#15 Old 09-21-2004, 08:36 AM
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For the record someone made that avatar for me. I didn't make it myself.

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#16 Old 09-21-2004, 08:37 AM
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This is a truly amazing program which can do a lot of good for kids who might otherwise have no positive role models in their lives. It's important to know that you can stick around though - there's nothing worse for a kid who has already been hurt than to start to trust a big brother or sister, only to have them disappear as soon as their volunteer term is over. Take your time finding the right kid for you so you'll be more likely to stay.



I have a friend (now 35) who's "Big Brother" is still his only family. That relationship has been the most important one in his life since he was 10 years old.



I'm sad I can't do it, but I tend to travel a lot and move countries, and it just wouldn't be fair.
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#17 Old 09-21-2004, 08:40 AM
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Michael, I think you will make a good big bro. Even if you can't make you own avatars. :
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#18 Old 09-21-2004, 08:41 AM
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I don't plan on going anywhere. So you get to decide (or help decide) which kid you get? They don't just assign you one?

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#19 Old 09-21-2004, 08:53 AM
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I think first off they will pair you with a boy. Male role model and single mothers and all that. Other than that I think you can request ages and stuff. But if it were me, I would just go for who they think needs it the most.
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#20 Old 09-21-2004, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael View Post

I don't plan on going anywhere. So you get to decide (or help decide) which kid you get? They don't just assign you one?

From what I've heard thay do take the time to pair up interests etc. I hope that's true!
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#21 Old 09-21-2004, 09:01 AM
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oh and ps - It's great that you're going to be a Big Brother!! They tend to need more men because of the aforementionned deadbeat dad phenomenon, and as an intelligent and passionate person you're going to be a great influence! Good on you
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#22 Old 09-21-2004, 09:14 AM
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Just received this, thought I'd post it for anyone else that might be interested...



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Hi Michael!



My name is --- and I am a Case Manager at Big Brothers Big Sisters. Thank you for your interest in our agency. We are so glad you are thinking about volunteering! We have 3 programs that our "Bigs" can choose from:



In our School Based Program, volunteers spend one hour a week during the school year getting together with a child at one of the local schools. You can play kickball, work on homework, eat in the cafeteria...you get to experience the fun of grade school all over again! And the best part is, it is based on your schedule when you see your "Little".



In our UP2US Program, volunteers spend one hour a week with a child, but it is during the after-school program at the Boys and Girls Club in Bloomington. You get to hang out after school and use the facilities of the Boys and Girls Club - either the gameroom, computer lab, gym, or just sitting around and talking.



In our Community Program, volunteers get together with their "Little" 2-3 times a month for at least a year commitment. What activities you choose depends on what you both like doing...going to a park, making cookies, playing basketball, watching movies - whatever your interests are!



If you have any questions, or would like to start the process to be a Big, please call our office at ---. Thank you, and I hope to hear from you soon!


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#23 Old 09-21-2004, 09:15 AM
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Cool. We wanna hear all about this you know?
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#24 Old 09-21-2004, 09:15 AM
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And btw, your avatar is confusing my son.



"Mommy, you know what this picture tells me? It tells me that God is in a plant cup. What's that all about?"
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#25 Old 09-21-2004, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by revelsunrise View Post

Weird! I actually spent some time today researching this because it's something I've wanted to get involved in for a long time.



That's sooooo cool of you Michael! I think you'll be a great influence on a child who may need somebody to look up to. Best of luck.



You should! Then we can compare stories!

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#26 Old 09-21-2004, 09:59 AM
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Wayto go Michael...I'm sure you'll make a good big sister...*cough* I mean, uh...brother...



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#27 Old 09-21-2004, 10:30 AM
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You should! Then we can compare stories!





Yay! You have inspired me to take the next steps into doing this.
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#28 Old 09-21-2004, 10:54 AM
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Michael, do you want to start with my daughter? I can have her on a plane in a few hours!
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#29 Old 09-21-2004, 11:22 AM
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When I was around 10 or so, I had a big sister myself. Once or twice a week she would come to my school, take me out to lunch, help me with my math, and just talk to me about stuff. She took me shopping once too. She was a really great lady. We kept in touch for about 5 years after that. I've never been a big sister, but I was a mentor at my old elementary school to a 4th grader. I'd take her out to a movie, or help with homework..stuff like that. I filled out the app for the big brother big sister program but I haven't finished the process yet, but I intend to.
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#30 Old 10-27-2004, 11:44 AM
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You should! I think you'd do a great job and if you've experienced it yourself then hopefully you know what a difference it can make!



I don't really have much new to add. I went through the interview.



They asked about my childhood and family situation. Asked about my living situation - do I have pets, firearms, alcohol, drugs, anything dangerous in the home.



Then they asked about what type of child I'd like to be paired up with (or not paired up with). I wasn't really too specific. I don't think I have an age preference. A younger child would probably be cuter and easier to entertain but an older child would probably need a mentor more. I did indicate that I'd rather not have a child that's hyper. I'm more of a laid back person and can barely entertain myself for 2 hours let alone entertain someone else! Also told them I'd rather not be paired up with a child that has any history of animal abuse but then I kind of took it back. I thought maybe I could teach the child a greater appreciation for animals. I told her a vegetarian would be perfect because then we'd have something in common right off. I doubt that would be very easy for them to find though.



It took about an hour but the lady who interviewed me was really nice, I didn't mind it at all. Anyway, she told me it would be about two weeks before they'd have a match. Monday was two weeks so I should be hearing from them any day. My boss told me they called him on Monday (I put him down as a reference) but he hadn't called them back. He said he was going to yesterday but who knows.



I guess the next step is they call and tell me about the child and tell the child and/or his parent(s) about me. If it sounds good to each of us then we meet at the child's house with someone from the BB/BS office and the parent's present. She also said they tell the parents they have the option of seeing where I live (since their child may spend time here). If that goes well then I can start picking up the child each week. I can't wait!



I feel great about this and I would really love to see more VB'ers do this! *hint hint* All they ask is that you be willing to make a year's commitment and that you try to spend time each week or every other week with the child. If it's every other week then they'd like for you to spend twice as long with them. I think they said 10-12 hours a month.



Really once you're paired up the BB/BS office doesn't seem to have much involvement. She said they plan group activities 3-4 times a year. Around here she said they'd go to Six Flags, a Cardinals game, stuff like that. And I think they check with the bigs and the child and/or parent(s) every few months to see if things are working out and if there are any questions or concerns.



Anyway, it's been forever since I've made a post this long! I'll post more when I hear from them, hopefully it'll be soon!

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