See You at the Pole “Aflame”

SYATP LOGO

Education Extra

See You at the Pole 2022 “Aflame,” the Annual Global Day of Student Prayer, is Wednesday, September 28. All around the globe, in every time zone, millions of students will meet at their school’s flagpole for a time of prayer for the 32nd Annual See You at the Pole (SYATP). SYATP is a student-initiated, student- organized and student-led event.

SYATP is about one simple thing – STUDENTS in PRAYER. Before school, tens of thousands of students locally meet together at their school’s flagpole in prayer for their friends, families, school, city, state and nation. This year’s SYATP emphasis is “Aflame,” taken from Romans 12:11-12 in the Bible.

See you at the poleFirst Priority will once again coordinate SYATP efforts for Greater Birmingham through:

  • Awareness – print, web, social media, TV and radio;
  • Students gathering at their school’s flagpole on the morning of September 28, to pray for their school, teachers, classmates, community and our nation; and
  • Community rallies, planned by local First Priority student volunteers and adults, that will be held on the evening of September 28.

See You at the Pole is a student-initiated, student-led movement that started in 1990. It originated with one youth group, meeting at night at several schools in the community during a weekend retreat. SYATP brings students to their school flagpoles to intercede for their leaders, schools and families, asking God to bring moral and spiritual awakening to their campuses and countries. First Priority estimates 25,000-30,000 students across the Greater-Birmingham Area will participate in SYATP this year. For more information, visit syatp.com. †

Asher and Daniel in Doctors Office

Healthy Living

Cancer diagnoses are nothing to celebrate. As Daniel Walker puts it, “no cancer is good.” But when Walker found out the specific type of cancer his son had, he considered it good news. Daniel’s son Asher was diagnosed with leukemia in January 2016. Asher had turned 5 years old just two weeks prior, and according to Daniel, he had been a “normal, regularly active child” up to that point.

That changed in one weekend. The weather was freezing in central Alabama, and Asher was pale and seemed to have a cold. By Monday morning, his symptoms had worsened, so Daniel decided to keep him out of school. On the way to the bathroom that morning, Asher stumbled, fell on the floor and began vomiting. Daniel knew something was wrong, so he set up an appointment with Asher’s pediatrician. That doctor sent him to Children’s of Alabama, where after a series of tests, physicians determined that Asher had leukemia. Initial results suggested he had acute myeloid leukemia (AML), a type of cancer that requires intensive chemotherapy treatments followed by months in the hospital recovering from each treatment cycle. He might even need a stem cell transplant–one of the most intensive types of leukemia treatments.

Asher and Daniel in Doctors Office
Asher Walker is seen here with his dad, Daniel, and Dr. Kutny.

When Daniel found out, he went numb. “(My body and mind) almost went into like auto-pilot mode,” he said. “It’s like it compartmentalized any emotion that I was feeling because I knew I was the only one that he had to be able to deal with this. As Daniel was still processing the diagnosis, doctors at Children’s were doing more genetic tests on Asher’s leukemia cells. Two days later, they had more details. Asher had a specific subtype of AML called acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL). Historically, it has been extremely difficult to treat. Patients with APL need aggressive treatments, such as cytotoxic chemotherapy. They typically become very sick from both the disease and its treatments, and less than half are cured. In the 1980s, only 25% of APL patients might be alive and free of leukemia five years later, according to Dr. Malcolm Smith of the National Cancer Institute.

But in January 2016, when Asher was diagnosed, Dr. Matthew Kutny, a pediatric hematologist and oncologist at Children’s of Alabama, was in the early stages of a clinical trial using a new APL treatment. It involved a regimen of arsenic trioxide and all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). If Asher joined the clinical trial, he could be treated for APL without needing chemotherapy. Asher would be exposed to far fewer toxins and spend less time in the hospital. One doctor told Daniel a diagnosis of APL was best news he could have hoped for. “It was a no-brainer,” Daniel said. He enrolled his son in the trial. Initially, it wasn’t easy. Daniel remembers nights during the first two weeks when Asher’s oxygen levels would fall, and doctors would come into Asher’s room with a portable X-ray machine to check him out. “That’s what was the scariest–the first two weeks in the hospital, the first two weeks of treatment,” Daniel said. “Because he wasn’t eating well. We were trying to figure out medication.”

But Kutny had warned Daniel to expect this, and eventually, Asher’s symptoms improved with the supportive care given by his medical team. Soon, Asher was able to leave the hospital and receive treatments in the outpatient clinic. He was even able to go to the grocery store with his dad on the way home from treatments and tag along while Daniel went to work, if needed. “That was really a very positive aspect of this treatment: Asher could still be a kid, and he didn’t have to worry about the struggles and the additional illnesses that come along with the more traditional chemotherapy treatment,” Daniel said. Asher’s treatment lasted almost nine months. Aside from trips to Children’s to be treated, his life was mostly normal, Daniel said. Eventually, he went into full remission. Now, he returns to the hospital only once a year just to get bloodwork. “You can say, ‘OK it’s bad, no matter which (type of leukemia) we had.’ But I’m going to be grateful that it’s this and not something else,” Daniel said. “Because with this, it’s much more manageable.”

Asher was one of 154 pediatric APL patients who participated in Kutny’s study, which was coordinated by the National Cancer Institute. Between 2015 and 2019, More than 80 institutions across the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) enrolled patients in the study. It found that the treatment of arsenic trioxide and ATRA without cytotoxic chemotherapy was just as effective as the traditional chemotherapy treatment while being far less challenging to the patient. It’s now the new standard of care for these patients. The study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association-Oncology in November. “We’re excited as a COG investigator to be in an era where we can offer patients a far more effective and less toxic approach to treating cancer,” Kutny said. “This is what we hope represents the future for many childhood cancers, that we can move away from the more toxic and intense treatments toward a more targeted approach that really attacks specifically the genetic changes that occurred in the cell that turned it into a cancer cell.”

Kutny hopes doctors will find ways to refine the treatment process even further in the future. Because the arsenic trioxide has to be administered intravenously, patients have to visit clinics to receive it. This happens daily during the induction phase of the treatment and five days a week during consolidation. This often leads to a lot of absences from school for patients like Asher, who according to Daniel, missed about half of kindergarten while being treated. Kutny says there are some encouraging early studies on converting the arsenic trioxide treatment to an oral form, which would prevent patients from missing school. That means the treatment that already has set a new standard of care still has room to get better. For more information, visit childrensal.org/cancer. †

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Looking for Vacation Bible School (VBS) opportunities happening this summer in and around Birmingham? Check out the great options in the list below! Click on the links for more information.

June 3-5

HayDay VBS at Indian Springs First Baptist Church

June 6-10

The Hope Awakens at Shades Mountain Baptist Church

June 6-10

Treasured, Discovering You’re Priceless to God at The Lutheran Church of Vestavia Hills

June 6-10

VBS at Briarwood Presbyterian Church

June 6-10

VBS at Meadow Brook Baptist Church

June 13-16

VBS at Vestavia Hills Baptist Church

June 13-17

Monumental VBS at Double Oak Community Church

June 27-July 1

Created for a Purpose VBS at Vestavia Hills UMC

July 18-20

Family Vacation Bible School at Siluria Baptist Church, Alabaster


Don’t see your church’s VBS listed? Email details to melissa@christianfamilypublications.com, Subject Line VBS/Summer. 

Sozo Children jumping

Cover Story

The Sozo Children’s Choir kicked off its multi-state “Miracle Tour” in April with performances in Delaware and Maryland, where the choir opened the Youth for Christ dinner featuring Tim Tebow. In May, the ministry celebrated its 12th anniversary with a concert at the historic Lyric in Birmingham featuring upbeat praise music and a special acapella worship experience. “The show at The Lyric was exciting for all of us. Every choir tour just gets bigger and better,” said Cathy Head, chair of the Sozo board of directors. “These children have been practicing for over a year to prepare for this trip and to be able to celebrate this birthday with us in such an amazing venue was a real blessing. It’s bigger than we could have imagined when we first planned the tour last year.” 

Sozo Children performing on stage
The Sozo Children’s Choir has performed for nearly 10,000 people (and counting) in four states during the 2022 tour. They perform at churches and schools.

For the last year, the children have been rehearsing and performing in Uganda, Africa leading up to the American tour. Sozo Children, a Birmingham-based ministry, serving the needs of vulnerable children in Uganda, created the choir in 2016 and the current tour is the fourth time the choir has traveled to America and is the first time the choir has toured the states since being stranded in Ala. two years ago when the pandemic forced the children to shelter in place nearly 8000 miles from home. “The entire month has been a whirlwind of events for us,” said Suzanne Owens, CEO of Sozo Children. Following the performance at the historic Lyric Theater, Sozo hosted its Run For A Reason 5K through the streets of the Avondale community ending with a choir performance at Avondale Brewing.

The choir tour was originally planned for January through May but due to a series of delays in the process the tour will now last into early October. Although off to a late start, the choir has now performed in four states and to nearly 10,000 people and is busy booking dates in churches and schools wherever they are able. There is no set charge for performances, but most churches and schools take up an offering or make a donation to the ministry. 

“Starting later than planned has turned into an opportunity for us,” said Owens. “Spreading the tour through the summer will allow the kids to attend Vacation Bible School (VBS) with some of the local churches during the week.” The choir has been invited to The World Games and will sing The National Anthem at a Legion soccer game as well.

Sozo Children girls dancing and singing
The “Miracle Tour” serves as a mission’s trip for the Sozo children. While in the United States, they will also experience things like attending Vacation Bible School.

The choir serves as a mission trip for the children of Sozo, who audition to join the tour every other year. Owens said this choir is special because it is the first one where children from the local community in Uganda reached out to audition. In total, five children from the local community joined the choir, and Sozo, for the first time. “We’re excited to share this worship and learning experience with our kids and let them spend quality time with children here in Alabama,” said Owens. “Growing up here, we sometimes take things like Vacation Bible School for granted but it’s a real treat for our kids.” 

A former youth pastor who moved into ministry from mortgage banking, Owens says she never imagined she’d be operating a children’s home in Africa, or anywhere else. “Two of my former youth had accepted a temporary assignment as missionaries in Uganda,” said Owens. “They were going there to help build a website for a church and play in a worship band, but they found a children’s home that had been practically abandoned.”

Owens said she felt like God was leading her to intervene but the idea of opening a home for the children was out of her comfort zone at the time. “I did a lot of arguing with God,” she said laughingly. “I felt like He was telling me ‘You’re going to open a children’s home and have missionaries’ and I was saying ‘no, I’m not.’”

Sozo Children Girls
Sozo Children is a Birmingham-based ministry that serves the needs of vulnerable children in Uganda.

Eventually, Owens and the mission team got permission to take in some of the children from the home. With some help from local leaders, they agreed and rented a house, hired a local staff, and initially took in 17 of the children. That’s when they decided on a name for the ministry. The name “Sozo” comes from Scripture. It is the Greek word that means “to rescue or save” and appears more than 100 times in the New Testament.

Today, Sozo Children has grown to provide housing, nutritional care, counseling, medical care, quality education and spiritual direction to more than 125 children. But the reach goes much farther. Sozo ministers to families in the local village where it works with a local pastor to host “kids club” twice a week—providing snacks, play time and devotionals for hundreds of children who sometimes walk miles just to attend. “Children come to Sozo from some really harsh circumstances,” she said. “Some of them have been abandoned, some have lost their parents. Some of them have been abused and some have been rescued from trafficking situations.”

In Uganda, like many other parts of the world where extreme poverty is everyday life, children are often dropped off at local police stations by desperate parents who can no longer provide for them. Social workers assist in finding homes for the children with relatives or children’s homes like Sozo. “We place a lot of emphasis on sustainability,” she said. “We want to equip them to be self-sustaining and self-sufficient—to learn skills that will benefit them throughout the rest of their lives long after they graduate from their time with us.”

Sozo Children Group Shot
Since the Sozo Children’s Choir started in 2016, they have traveled to the United States four times. During 2020, the choir was stranded in America due to the COVID-19 shutdown.

“The purpose of mission work is not to go there to create little Americans, so we don’t impose our western culture on them. Instead, we go there to walk alongside them and experience God together,” said Owens, adding, “We want them to be amazing leaders for Uganda and we want them to be strong leaders for Christ in their communities wherever they go in life.”

Sozo also leads short-term mission teams to Uganda where participants can interact in the work of the ministry, deliver food packs, and learn about African culture. Despite limited access to travel since the start of the pandemic, Owens is optimistic about the future of international missions. “We’ve only had two mission teams travel to Uganda since the end of 2019, but we are planning a full calendar for next year and trusting God to guide the way,” she said. Individuals can sign up to join a Sozo mission team on the Sozo Children website. Many teams are organized by churches, small groups, or even groups of college students who want to take a meaningful trip for Spring Break or during summer or Christmas breaks. 

Sozo Children is funded through child sponsorships and donations and also operates Sozo Trading Co., an upscale thrift store in the Avondale community. To learn more about Sozo Children, or to sign up for a mission trip, book the choir, or sponsor a child, visit www.sozochildren.org.

-Terry Schrimscher

Did you enjoy this story? Click here to view our full June issue!

 

Miracle Moments Briklyn in hospital bed with family surrounding her

Miracle Moments

Brought to you by: Molly Maid of Birmingham, www.mollymaid.com/birmingham

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you…” Isaiah 41:10

Briklyn in hospital bed with siblings surrounding her
Kellie Franklin says from the day Briklyn had her first seizure, the entire family came together to support her. “Briklyn’s brother Blayze (22) and sister Breagan (20) have been by her side every step of the way and have been huge support systems for her.” Pictured above left to right: Blayze, Briklyn, and Breagan.

November 21, 2016 is a day the Franklin family of Jemison, Ala. will never forget. Then 11-year-old daughter, Briklyn Franklin had her first seizure. “She was in our garage with her dad Anthony and her brother Blayze washing out paintbrushes where they had been painting her room,” mom Kellie Franklin remembers, adding, “Blayze heard Briklyn call his name. About the time he looked up, she was stumbling backward, fell back and when she hit the ground, she started seizing.” Briklyn’s father ran toward her and cradled her head in his arms and told his son to call 911. He was with Briklyn as her body started stiffening and quickly jerking and the area around her eyes and mouth started turning blue. “At that moment, that was the most helpless he had ever felt,” Franklin explains. “He said he thought he was watching his baby girl die in his arms and there was nothing he could do.” 

Kellie Franklin returned from work to EMTs in her driveway. “I rode with her in the ambulance as they transported her to the ER at Children’s Hospital in Birmingham.” The Franklins learned from doctors that everyone gets one “free seizure,” so they diagnosed Briklyn with Convulsive Syncope. They were instructed to follow up with her pediatrician. After following up, Briklyn’s pediatrician scheduled her for an EEG on December 28. “The following day they called me and said that her EEG had revealed abnormal spikes and waves consistent with recent seizure activity and requested that we follow up with Pediatric Neurology.” Franklin shared with the doctors about an unusual occurrence where Briklyn was walking to her father’s shop in the backyard. “She remembered getting about halfway up the stairs but the next thing she recalled was being in the kitchen flipping the light switch on and off thinking she was opening the garage door.” 

Briklyn holding Seizure Free Cake
As 16-year-old Briklyn Franklin looks back on her journey with epilepsy, she shares, “I felt alone at times… I realized that all I needed to do was give it all to God because He was going through it with me the whole time.” Briklyn attends Jemison High School

The family’s idea of what a seizure is changed that day. “We learned quickly just how different seizures can look not only from one person to another but even within the same individual,” Franklin says. Because of these events, Briklyn was diagnosed with epilepsy. She was put on medication but had a seizure during the next two months and then was seizure free for six and a half months. “The stress of not knowing if or when there would be another seizure could have been enough to break a person whose hope is in anything other than the Lord, but we trusted that she would not have a single seizure that He wasn’t aware of beforehand.” 

Briklyn’s seizures started back on September 2, 2017. Doctors increased her medication but by the end of March, she had six seizures in seven and a half months. “I immediately began researching neurosurgeons and began praying for a specific doctor,” Franklin says. After this, Briklyn went through several scans and procedures, and on November 10, 2020, she underwent a craniotomy. “The type of epilepsy that Briklyn has is not a type that she would be expected to outgrow,” Franklin says, adding, “We weren’t sure if we would ever actually see her make it seven months seizure free… right now she is almost 14 months seizure-free!” 

The Franklin family sees God’s fingerprints all over Briklyn’s journey with epilepsy through people near and far praying for Briklyn, the doctors who treated her that the Franklins had specifically prayed would do the surgery and so much more. “For anyone who asks how Briklyn’s journey to seizure freedom is a miracle, I would have to ask, ‘How is it not?’” 

After nearly 14 months of no seizures, Briklyn unfortunately had a seizure in November. “We are thankful for the miracle of how long she was seizure-free and pray that, if it is God’s will, she never has another one. However, we seek His perfect will above our selfish and limited wishes,” Kellie Franklin says, adding, “We trust that we will persevere through every circumstance we face knowing that the perseverance will make us mature and complete in our faith.”

-Melissa Armstrong 

We need you to share your Miracle Moment! Email melissa@christianfamilypublications.com Subject Line: Miracle Moments or call 205-408-7150.

Youth News Flag Ceremony at Vulcan Girl Scouts Group Shot

Youth News

Youth News U.S Flags Retire at OLS Boys Burning flagsFifty frayed and faded U.S. flags were recently properly retired thanks to the patriotism and partnership of two groups at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church (OLS) in Homewood. Boy Scouts of America Troop 237 with the help of  Knights of Columbus conducted a retirement ceremony for the worn flags. Following the Pledge of Allegiance and the recounting of the symbolism of the stars and stripes and the dedication of past patriots, the scouts placed pieces of the flags into the fire. The preferred way to retire U.S. flags is cutting them, separating the stripes but keeping the blue field of stars intact and burning them. Flags cannot be buried or discarded.


Youth News Flag Ceremony at Vulcan girl burning flag with adultIn conjunction with the Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama, Vulcan Park & Museum recently held a Flag Ceremony and Retirement. Girl Scouts from various troops in the Birmingham area participated in the program. Scouts recited facts about our nation’s flag and began a formal process to dispose of tattered flags. †

Boy reading in Library

Education Extra

Reading is fundamental. It affects all areas of a child’s success. And summertime is a great time to make reading a priority.

Boy reading in LibraryDr. Amy McCollum is a pediatrician at Midtown Pediatrics in Birmingham. She says it is important for parents to encourage strong reading habits in their child, and she says that begins at birth. “I would really encourage parents from birth to start reading to their baby,” she says. “Holding your child and reading a book together is going to have these great associations of attachment and connection. Your voice, which is the most comforting voice, is going to be what they hear.”

As the child gets older, Dr. McCollum says parents should encourage their child to choose what books they want to read. And she adds, don’t worry if they stick with the same theme, or want to read the same book over and over; they’re still reading. Make library visits a regular part of your summer. Dr. McCollum says if you are able, choose one day a week that is a library day. “Talk to the librarian, let them suggest books the child might like,” she says. “Check out books on a regular basis and sign up for summer reading programs at the library.” Again, Dr. McCollum says as the child gets older, continue to let them choose the books they are interested in. “I think sticking with the topic of letting them choose what they’re interested in is important,” she says. “For instance, if your son only wants to read graphic novels instead of chapter books, that’s fine if that’s what he enjoys.”

As kids get older, encouraging good reading habits can be challenging, as video games and devices serve as constant distractions. Dr. McCollum knows this firsthand. “We just have to fight to fight. In my family 30 minutes of reading gets you 30 minutes of video game time,” she says. And parents should ask themselves, am I modeling good reading habits to my child, or am I spending my free time on a device? By putting forth a little bit of effort and intentionality, any child can become a reader.

-Children’s of Alabama, www.childrensal.org 

vineyard family services Teens Large 2

Mission Makers

When a young person is mentored, the positive impact is substantial, and Vineyard Family Services(VFS) ministry is doing all it can to make sure our area youth have this life changing advantage. Thanks to a federal grant from the Office of Juvenile Justice for Detention Prevention, VFS is implementing Wise Advisors, a mentor/mentee program. “The program is driven by one thing, to help and improve our at-risk youth in Shelby County and surrounding counties,” explains Derick Williams, Family Services Director at VFS. Designed for mentees 12- to 17-year-olds, VFS is searching for caring adults ages 21 and older to be mentors.

vineyards family services Mentoring Man with teen boy
Besides the mentoring program, Vineyard Family Services also offers other programs designed to help families build a greater future including F.I.T. DAD (promoting responsible fatherhood) and BackPack Buddies which serves more than 1000 children a week who are at risk for food insecurity.

Williams, who is overseeing Wise Advisors, has personally seen where the lack of a mentor can lead. “I worked for the Alabama Department of Corrections for many years. One thing I continually saw in the prison system were a lot of our inmates who were either from a home with no father or didn’t have a  mentor in general. You could clearly see how it affected them as a teen and followed them into adulthood.”

Williams also has the facts when it comes to the impact of mentors. For instance, 55 percent of mentored youth are less likely to skip school, 55 percent are more likely to be enrolled in college, 46 percent are less likely to start using drugs, and 81 percent are more likely to report participating regularly in extracurricular activities. Mentoring, at its core, guarantees young people that there is someone who cares about them, assures them they are not alone in dealing with day-to-day challenges and makes them feel like they matter. Mentoring also reduces “depression symptoms” and increases “social acceptance, academic attitudes and grades. (mentoring.org)

vineyard family services woman with teen girl mentor
Vineyard Family Services is looking for mentors who lead by example as a Christian mentor. “How else will we be able to get a mentee to see a need to make changes?” Learn more at www.vfsdads.com.

June 5, 2021 VFS will host a one-day training for Wise Advisor mentors 9 a.m.– 4p.m. at their Pelham office. Training gives mentors the knowledge they need to engage with mentees. “In training we cover a plethora of situations that a mentor may be faced with,” says Williams adding that all mentors must be willing to have one home visit with VFS leader, mentee and parent and pass a background check. Mentors are also asked to commit to mentoring for at least nine months and invest at least four hours a month with mentees. “Through that time investment, they build a healthy relationship, help strengthen and guide the talents of these mentees, they encourage them to come up with their own coping strategies and empower them to work through their own issues. They lead by example,” says Williams.

Mentees also commit in writing to participate in the program and mentees and mentors are carefully matched. “We want to make sure we get a good fit,” says Williams. ”Race, religion do not play a role in it. Our motto is to match mentee with mentor with common interests. This allows for the opportunity to build a great relationship.” Williams emphasizes that mentors are not tasked with being a counselor to the mentee, however, VFS does offer this service free of charge to any teen in the mentor program.

At the end of nine months, VFS holds a mentee graduation celebration. Post-graduation mentor/mentee relationships may continue, but VFS believes it is critical to celebrate the nine month investment and accomplishment achieved by mentor and mentee . “Some of these kids have not received credit for anything. This is a milestone we don’t want them to ever forget.” To learn more about mentoring visit www.vfsdads.com. To sign up for the June 5 training contact Derick Williams, derickwillvfs@gmail.com 205-704-0594.  If you know a child in that can benefit from this free mentoring program, contact Charity Havercroft at VFS, charityhavercroft@gmail.com, 205-837-0265. †

 

big brothers big sisters image of child with phone

Special Feature

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Birmingham(BBBS) is now offering virtual mentoring through its new e-mentoring program. The program launched last March during the pandemic and gave BBBS a way to continue its mission of creating and supporting one-to-one mentoring relationships that ignite the power and promise of youth. The initiatives of BBBS bolster self-esteem and work to improve the chances that the youth served will achieve success in their academic, social, and family lives. BBBS of Greater Birmingham operates under the vision that all youth achieve their full potential.

big brothers big sisters image of mentor call
Consider being a virtual mentor to a child in our community. Learn more at www.mentoralittle.com.

Given recent calls for social distancing, many Littles experience an exacerbation of the issues they regularly face, from societal barriers and opportunity gaps to poverty and identity-based discrimination. Consequently, it is incumbent upon Big Brothers Big Sisters to continue fulfilling their mission by being there for the youth they serve. This new virtual mentoring program ensures BBBS remains a visible ally, for mentoring means that they will not have to face life’s challenges alone.

E-mentoring involves creating one-to-one relationships virtually through phone calls, video chat, and more. Youth in our communities are paired with volunteers seeking to mentor within a more modern, current platform. Volunteers serve as mentors from their phones and computers at a minimum of 30 minutes each week. This partnership allows volunteers with limited schedules the ability to give back while working with a busy schedule. Additionally, although it takes place virtually, the E-mentoring program is not limited to just chats on the phone. Match Support Specialist will help provide virtual activities for each match. Such as online cooking classes, dance lessons, homework help, virtual story times, and more.

As CEO Sue Johnson states, “Our priority and what distinguishes Big Brothers Big Sisters is our commitment to providing long-term mentoring, resulting in proven positive educational and social outcomes, improving kids’ chances to succeed”. Currently, BBBS has over 150 Littles in need of a mentor. With mentoring now more accessible and easier than ever, you can become a mentor today. To learn more about volunteering or to donate visit: www.mentoralittle.com. †

 

 

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