Would you like to change your child’s life?

If you believe having an additional adult role model in your child’s life would be a good thing, then you’ve come to the right place.

Every year, we match thousands of kids from all over New York City with an adult volunteer mentor who is ready, willing, and able to provide a child with the friendship, guidance, and advice s/he needs to achieve a brighter future.

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To qualify, children are generally between the ages of 7 to 16.  Each match will also be assigned a program manager to provide the volunteer (Big), your child (Little), and you, guidance and support throughout the year.

Since volunteers are carefully screened, and we try to find the adult mentor that best fits the personality and interests of your child, it could take several months before we find your child’s match.

There is no cost to you to have your child join our program. And more than one child per family can join at any time. Our only request is that each child be committed to this program for 8 hours per month, for a minimum of one year.

Brooklyn Mentoring Initiative Female

To enroll a child, click on the button below, email info@bigsnyc.org or call 212-686-2042

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Parent FAQ

Q. Who are our volunteers?

A.   Our volunteer mentors (we call them “Big Brothers” or “Big Sisters”) come from a wide variety of social, economic and ethnic backgrounds. They are mature and career oriented individuals who work at many different sectors such as finance, government, technology, education, medicine, fashion, etc.

Q. What is the screening process to allow a volunteer to become a mentor?

A.   Our volunteers go through a comprehensive screening process which includes the following: Application, orientation, a thorough interview, background check and mentor training.

Q. How does the matching process work?

A.   We match our volunteer mentors (our “Big Brothers/Big Sisters”) with our youth, based on their common interests, geographical location and goals in life. The process starts with the family coming in for an interview. If the child is accepted our program managers start looking for the most suitable volunteer to form the match. When a volunteer is chosen all parties (program manager, parent, child, volunteer) come to the agency to get to know each other and go over the match guidelines. Once all the parties feel comfortable moving forward with the match, the child and the volunteer mentor are formally matched in a mentoring relationship.

Q. Will my child be matched with a male or female mentor?

A.   Our matches are always same gender. Therefore, girls are matched with female mentors, and boys are matched with male mentors.

Q. Can a mentor help my child with their school work/academics?

A.   Our volunteers are mentors; as such, they are not trained to serve as tutors. However, if your child needs help with homework or is struggling with school, our agency provides tutoring referrals and other educational resources. In addition, our program managers will provide support and guide the mentor to help the child achieve academic success.

Q. How much does the program cost?

A.   Our program is free to families.

Q. How long will my child have his/her mentor?

A.   We ask for a one-year commitment, but our matches could formally stay in the program until the child graduates from high school. Some of the relationships formed at Big Brothers Big Sisters have stayed together for a life-time.

Q. What is the time commitment to the program?

A.   Match outings are according to the schedule of the mentor and the family. They usually occur on the weekends when the match can meet for the dedicated 4 hours, twice a month, once every two weeks.