PROGRAMS

Big Brothers Big Sisters strives to provide a mentor for every child who needs or wants one.  We serve children from all walks of life but we pay particular attention to the children who need us most, including those living in single parent homes, growing up in poverty and coping with parental incarceration.

Our programs are available in Thurston, Mason, Lewis, Pacific, and Grays Harbor counties.

Bigs in the Community

Many relationships between Bigs and Littles fall under our Community-Based programs. These are one-to-one outings and activities, doing things they enjoy together, like:

  • Taking a walk in the park
  • Going to a museum
  • Visting the local farmer’s market
  • Listening to music or doing arts and crafts
  • Hanging out and talking

Some Bigs meet their Littles on the weekends. Others get together with their Littles in the evenings. Each match is unique and develops a schedule that works for them. All Bigs and Littles make a commitment to be matched for at least one year.

Through the generosity of donors, our Community-Based matches often have the opportunity to attend sporting events such as Mariner’s games, and community events and productions such as Ballet Northwest’s The Nutcracker.

Bigs in Schools

School Based

It may sound obvious, but sometimes the best place to help a child realize their potential is at school, and kids enjoy having their Bigs meet with them there.

School-Based programs are currently available in the following counties and districts for the 2017-2018 school year:

  • Thurston County: Yelm and North Thurston School Districts
  • Lewis County: Chehalis and Centralia School Districts
  • Pacific County: Raymond, Ocean Beach Willapa Valley, and South Bend School Districts

Contact us to learn more about exact location and meeting times.

Community Center Based

Bigs meet their Little at a local community center, typically one hour a week after school. This allows matches to build a friendship within a structured setting with professional staff support nearby. The activities can include whatever appeals to the Big and Little – from shooting hoops and hanging out to reading a book together.

This program is currently available at the following locations:

  • Tumwater Boys and Girls Club
  • Southside School (Shelton)
  • Olympia Boys and Girls Club
  • Nisqually Middle School

Contact us to learn more about meeting days and times.

MILITARY STUDENT MENTORING

Military Student Mentoring is a school-based mentoring program for military connected youth. Volunteers spend lunchtime with their “Littles” once a week at a North Thurston elementary school.

Special Programs

Youth Impact Project

School Completion and Vocational Training for Incarcerated Youth

This program is conducted in partnership with the Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Council. One of our trained staff meets with and trains incarcerated youth and young adults on work place readiness skills. Once they are released, the program assists in finding them employment, and matches them with a mentor to meet in groups of 3-4 youths in order to talk about challenges, achievements and give further guidance.

To become a mentor for this program, or for more information, contact [email protected].

Gold Star Youth Mentorship Program

Matching youth who have lost a service member parent with a member of the armed forces

The Gold Star Youth Mentorship Program, a partnership between Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Washington and wear blue: run to remember, matches children of fallen service members with a mentor member of the armed forces. This mentor provides his or her youth a glimpse into the life of service that defined the youth’s fallen parent, while participating in the life affirming action of running. This positive relationship and living memorial promotes continued healing and growth.

Gold Star Youth Program is designed as a two-month mentorship and run training program. After careful screening conducted by Big Brothers – Big Sisters, active duty service members will be paired with a Gold Star Youth. Our Gold Star children will range in ages 6 to 16 years old.

The program requires a commitment from mentors and youth, every Saturday morning throughout April and May 2018, at the established weekly wear blue chapter runs. The weekly runs will follow a prescribed training plan, culminating in a special Memorial Day Weekend. Both youth and mentors will receive personalized wear blue: run to remember training shirts.

On the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, the mentor and Gold Star youth will participate in a Heroes’ Hike, joined by family members and local celebrity athletes. On Monday, May 29, Memorial Day, the mentor’s training and guidance will allow the Gold Star child to proudly participate with athletes and honored guests at wear blue‘s annual Memorial Day Run. It will be a meaningful day to celebrate and remember the parents of our Gold Star children, as well as all of our nation’s fallen heroes, with over 2,000 additional runners in the spirit of wear blue.

For more information, contact [email protected].

Bigs with Badges

Matching middle school youth with law enforcement officers and firefighters

Bigs with Badges connects youth with police and firefighters, building strong, trusting relationships. The officer meets the youth at their school during their lunch hour, and the pair spends time doing activities that interest both such as board games, sports, or playing cards.

To become learn more about this program, contact [email protected].