Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Alabama presents “Match of the Year” awards at “Honoring our Mentors” Gala
Match Ken and Pat Arrington and Tywaun, and Match Deb and Chis Litz and Lamar, have been named the 2015 Match of the Year!
“Our goal as an agency is to create and foster a lifelong friendship for a child. That is exactly what these matches exemplify”, said Bekah Schmidt, Match Support Specialist at the 2015 Honoring our Mentors Gala, on Thursday night.
Out of the 125 matches from Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Alabama (BBBSNA) two matches are selected for the Lelia Nebors, Match of the Year Award. Matches are selected by the staff based on the length of match, outstanding mentorship, communication and involvement with BBBSNA, and the impact the mentors have had on the child.
Bigs Pat and Ken, and Little Brother Tywaun
Pat and Ken Arrington have been matched with their Little, Tywaun, for a year and a half. Tywaun comes from a challenging background and his family knows struggle all too well. Tywaun personally has faced demons no child should face. Pat and Ken came into his life a year and a half ago. Since then, they have fought for Tywaun in the classroom, they have taught him valuable life lessons, they have celebrated victories with him, and been there for him when he has hit rock bottom and made poor decisions. There is no better example of Bigs who have come alongside a child and said, “No matter what, we will not give up on you”. Tywaun is a thoughtful and generous young man. He is very smart, and will do anything to provide for his family. He is a wonderful big brother to his younger brothers and is a leader to other children his age. As an agency, we are so proud of the progress Tywaun has made, and his Bigs who are leading him in the right direction. We thank them for their time and service to this agency and the children we serve.
Bigs Deb and Chris, and Little Brother Lamar
Deb and Chris Litz have also been matched with their Little, Lamar, for a year and a half. In Lamar’s world, it used to be only him and his mom. His mom works hard to provide for Lamar, and gives him every opportunity possible, but she realized that as a single mom there were times she couldn’t be there for Lamar. Deb and Chris have become the axil Lamar’s world revolves around Deb and Lamar are two peas in a pod. They are constantly laughing and feed off of each other’s joy. Chris is very busy with his job, but he takes time out of his job to have “guy time” with Lamar so they can talk about guy things. Lamar ran his first 5k last summer and is now training for his first half marathon. Because of the seeds his Bigs have planted, Lamar can do anything he sets his mind to. As an organization, our mission is that all children succeed in life. We do this through partnering with the parents/guardians and Bigs to come up with a success plan for each individual child. Lamar wants to be a doctor, an engineer, and a race car driver when he grows up. With Lamar’s Bigs and mother by his side, he will achieve anything he can dream.
With January being National Mentoring Month, we (BBBSNA) would like to thank all of our mentors and matches for their dedication and commitment to the program. There are 125 children currently in the program, and 94 children waiting to be matched. BBBSNA is looking forward to growing and expanding our program in 2015 to serve over 300 children in North Alabama.
About Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Alabama
For more than 100 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters has operated under the belief than 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 of North Alabama makes meaningful monitored matches between adult volunteers “Bigs” and children “Littles”. Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Alabama has been serving Madison, Marshall, Limestone, and Jackson counties since 1982.