If you grew up with the simple support of a parent, guardian, or loved one, it’s easy to forget how hard life can get if you don’t have people to look up to. Being a kid is hard enough, and harder still when you feel like you’re going through it alone.
Right now, there are hundreds of children across the Greater Vancouver area who are looking for someone to become their mentor. In fact, there’s a critical need for volunteers as the average wait time for mentor and mentee matches is two years, via the Big Brothers of Greater Vancouver.
In Surrey, Richmond, and the Tri-Cities, children are spending nearly three years on a waitlist, hoping to meet their new mentor at the end of it. That’s why the charity needs your help: They desperately need more volunteers.
As a volunteer, you have the potential to provide support and mentorship to a child in your local community. After you sign up, Big/Little Brothers are matched by the charity based on personality, interests, and location.
You’re not expected to have a car to participate in the program, nor are you expected to spend any/a lot of money on activities.
All you would be asked to do is pledge volunteer hours to help make a difference in a child’s life. Mentorship can lead to increased self-esteem, better decision-making skills, and make a child become more likely to go on to post-secondary education.
One of the biggest reasons people refrain from volunteering is that they get overwhelmed by the commitment of one hour a week. But according to a 2017 survey by Media Technology Monitor (MTM), the average Canadian spends 24.5 hours per week online.
So let’s be real: You spend at least one hour a week watching Vine compilations and Instagram stories. It would be pretty rad if you could spare one of those hours to make a child’s life objectively better.
If you’ve ever thought about volunteering, now is the time to apply to become a Big Brother or Mentor. It’s a rewarding experience and you’ll be making a meaningful difference at the same time.
Big Brothers of Greater Vancouver are encouraging volunteers of all genders over the age of 18 to apply to become a Mentor to children in Greater Vancouver. And the organization’s goal is to serve over 1,200 children across the Lower Mainland.
“Over the years we have seen a consistent and desperate need for our programming. We are proud that thanks to the generosity of our donors and our wonderful volunteers, we’re able to help more children year after year,” says Valerie Lambert, executive director at Big Brothers of Greater Vancouver.
“But what is most significant is that the demand for our programs is increasing at a rate that has left our organization with a perpetual imbalance between the increasing number of families in need of support and our experience of the changing trends of volunteerism.”
If you’re interested in making a difference and applying to become a volunteer, visit Big Brothers of Greater Vancouver to find out more.