Big Brothers Big Sisters Issues Back-to-School Call to Action
As children head back to school, Big Brothers Big Sisters issues a call to action to the community to Start Something to keep Will, Grundy, Kankakee & Iroquois Counties students on track to graduate.
The donor-supported mentoring organization carefully matches children with volunteer mentors in one-to-one staff-guided long-term mentoring relationships. Big Brothers Big Sisters provides ongoing support to the volunteers, mentees and mentors throughout the course of each match to keep the mentoring friendship going strong.
Big Brothers Big Sisters’ 2011 Youth Outcomes Report, released earlier this year, shows statistically significant improvements for youth during their first year of enrollment in the mentoring program in educational success as well as avoidance of risky behaviors and socio-emotional competency, such as educational expectations. Youth progress in these areas is linked to long-term outcomes, such as high school graduation, avoidance of juvenile delinquency, and college or job readiness.
“The Youth Outcomes Survey is an important tool in our commitment to hold ourselves accountable to the children, families, mentors and communities we serve as well as the donors who support our programs,” said Big Brothers Big Sisters’ chief executive officer Lisa Morel Las “We collect and use data to refine and improve our programs to achieve the greatest success for children enrolled in Big Brothers Big Sisters.”
The 2011 Youth Outcomes Report found statistically significant improvement in kids in Big Brothers Big Sisters’ community-based mentoring programs in three areas—educational-related success, avoidance of risky behaviors and socio-emotional competency.
- 94.5% and 95.2% of youth maintained an average or above average score or indicated improvement in the area of educational success for Big Brothers Big Sisters community-based and school-based programs, respectively;
- 97.9% and 96.6% of youth maintained an average or above average score or indicated improvement in the area of socio-emotional competence for Big Brothers Big Sisters community-based and its school-based programs, respectively;
- 88.8% and 83.4% of youth maintained an average or above average score or indicated improvement in the area of avoidance of risky behaviors for Big Brothers Big Sisters community-based and school-based programs, respectively.
The Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Youth Outcomes Survey, developed with the support of some of the nation’s leading experts in child development, tracks the children’s attitudes about eight specific measures:
- Social acceptance
- Parental trust
- Scholastic competency
- Presence of a special adult
- Educational expectations
- Attitudes toward risk (including smoking, drinking, drugs, skipping school, hitting, breaking rules in school, and being late for school)
- Grades (academic achievement)
About Big Brothers Big Sisters
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counties is part of a network of 370 local Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies across the country. As a United Way partner agency, it operates under the belief that inherent in every child is the ability to succeed and thrive in life. Most children served by Big Brothers Big Sisters are in single-parent and low-income families, or households where a parent is incarcerated.
As the nation’s largest donor and volunteer supported mentoring network, Big Brothers Big Sisters makes meaningful, monitored matches between adult volunteers (“Bigs”) and children (“Littles”).
Big Brothers Big Sisters provides a system of ongoing evaluation and support that is proven by independent studies to help families by improving the odds that “Littles” will perform better in school and avoid violence and illegal activities, and have stronger relationships with their parents and others. To find out more information, visit www.bbbswillgrundy.org or call (815) 723-BBBS.