How wonderful is it to end your day, knowing that you have put a smile on a child’s face? If you do not know, then believe me, the feeling is amazing. My name is Loren Lewis and I am a Youth Development major at Western Illinois University. As a student in this major, I want to positively impact the lives of children and I want to give these children reasons to appreciate the people in their communities who support, love, and care for them. That is why I came to Big Brothers Big Sisters to intern.
The mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters is to provide positive, consistent relationships between children and adults within their community. Any child going through our program will have the opportunity to realize their potential and build their future. In my opinion, every child could use a Big and every adult could use a Little. There is always room for social, academic, or emotional growth in both adults and children. Learning experiences, fun, friendship, a lifelong bond, and much more accompany a Big/Little relationship.
I came to Big Brothers Big Sisters in February 2014. The strong support we receive is sustaining 44 high-quality matches in Warren and McDonough counties. Each week when I come into the office, I look forward to seeing pictures of how much fun our matches are having!
My time at Big Brothers Big Sisters has given me an opportunity to plan programs and events for our matches. I had so many ideas and have been able to see them put into action. For example, our weekly Picture Contest has been a huge success. Each week, our Bigs and Littles have had a “task” to complete—things like eating healthy together, recycling, dressing alike, and drawing pictures of each other—and many of our matches have given us a good laugh with their creativity.
Interning for Big Brothers Big Sisters has provided me a rewarding experience that I would not have received elsewhere. Children in our program have seen educational achievements, learned about risky behaviors, and shown outstanding improvements in their self-esteem, and interpersonal relationships. Each of the caring Bigs has made a great impact on their Little’s life by being a friend and mentor.
If you do not know how wonderful it is to end your day knowing that you have put a smile on a child’s face and having your own as well, then I encourage you to become a mentor and experience a lifelong reward.