At Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah, we want to help ignite the potential of the Littles in our program. So what’s the best way to ensure kids meet their full potential? By pairing Littles with a dependable, trustworthy Big, 94% of Littles improved or maintained educational aspirations, while 93% improved social competence. Get involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah to learn more about volunteer opportunities in Utah, become a Big, and change a child’s life. 


Why Being a Big Matters

Youth don’t always recognize their own potential; however, through the example of the “Big” Mentors in our programs, Littles can start to explore the possibilities of their future. When young adults who face opportunity gaps have a mentor on their side, they are 55 percent more likely to enroll in college. In academics, mentored youth maintain better attitudes about school, have better attendance, and are more likely to pursue higher education. These mentorships not only help kids prepare for college and their careers but also help them with all relationships. 


Having a Friend

Last year, we had 1,001 kids enrolled in our three programs. Of these 1,001 children across Utah, 82 percent live in poverty, 60 percent are kids of color, 47 percent live in a single-parent household, and 10% have an incarcerated parent. They range in age from elementary to high school — 41 percent are in elementary school, 20 percent are in middle school, and the other 39 percent are in high school. With these high percentages of poverty and incarcerated guardians, these children need someone they can turn to when things get difficult, someone they can have fun with when they experience struggles; these kids need a friend and mentor.


According to Psychology Today, Dr. Eileen Kennedy-Moore writes in her article, “Does Your Child Need a Best Friend?” “Having a caring best friend is linked to, for example, less loneliness and anxiety, reduced impact of peer rejection and bullying, and better general self-worth and school engagement.” Through being a mentor and friend to your Little, they will be more able to thrive in their personal, social, and academic lives. 


Improving Your Little’s Mental Health

Dr. Constance Scharff, in her article, “6 Actions to Improve Your Kids’ Mental Health,” explains the importance of the following involvement with a child: focusing on what children do right, providing opportunities to earn rewards, responding instead of reacting, emphasizing that you’re in this together, breathing, separately and together, being consistent with yourself and the child. By staying engaged and consistent with your Little, they’ll be able to feel that added support in their life and focus more on their academics and relationships and less on the stresses they face. 


Contact Us

Here at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah, we want all kids to reach their full potential and have a friend or mentor they can rely on. Contact us to become a Big and learn about more volunteer opportunities in Utah.