Frequently Asked Questions
What type of commitment do you expect from volunteers?
We ask for a minimum of one hour a week for at least one year.
Are there any specific requirements to become a Big?
All volunteers must be at least 19 *unless part of a special school-based program. Community-based volunteers are also required to have a valid driver's license, a reliable vehicle, and proof of auto insurance.
How do you become a Big?
All volunteers must apply by completing an application (available online on the Program page). After the application is submitted potential Bigs are interviewed and vetted, which includes background and reference checks.
Who pays for activity expense?
We stress not spending a lot of money. We want the relationship built on friendship and shared interests. We encourage free or minimal cost activities. If it is a special occasion it is okay to ask the parent to contribute towards activity fees, if he/she has the means.
How is it determined which child will be matched as my Little?
We take your preferences and match them up with the parent/guardian and child's preferences, which we obtain from all match parties during the interview process. We want there to be a foundation to build on and do our best to match based on those preferences.
What if the child and I don't connect?
Your Match Support Specialist is there to provide support and intervention to get past hurdles, if possible. It could be that the child is afraid to trust you or open up to you due to frequent disappointment from others in his/her life. Match relationships take time to grow.
What kind of activities do Bigs plan with their Littles?
There are a lot of activities that require little or no money like parks, visiting the Y, going to the library, etc. Additionally we offer match activities multiple times throughout the year that not only provide a free activity but allow Bigs and Littles to built peer networks. The idea is to just spend the time together. Parental consent should also be obtained.
Not all questions can be answered since every situation is unique but we are willing to answer any other questions you might have about being a Big!