Singer-songwriter John Flynn wears his heart on his guitar and uses his music to help struggling war veterans, children with AIDS and many others.
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A Little Time, A Big Difference
A new push for youth mentoring is on—and you heard it from the lieutenant governor.
Delaware once had nearly 10,000 volunteer mentors. With that number having fallen by half, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware and Lieutenant Governor Matt Denn are working to reverse the trend.
Denn, who served as a Big Brother after attending law school, returned to mentoring in January. He has seen how a positive adult can influence a child, and how the relationship benefits the mentor.
“You really see a difference in the kid and see how important the relationship is, even if it’s only an hour a week,” Denn says. “That’s a great feeling. I know it’s a cliché that the mentors get as much out of it as the kids do, but I do think it’s true.”
Big Brothers Big Sisters makes it easy for anyone to be a mentor. Community-based mentors meet with their “littles” a few times a month on weekends or after school to engage in activities such as crafting, going to lunch or hitting a ball game. Those in the school-based mentoring program meet with their Littles at school for about an hour each week.
“It’s not about being a tutor,” says Jeanne Kasey, the organization’s public relations and fund development manager. “It’s about spending one-on-one time every week in order to build a strong foundation for kids.”
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware has about 100 children on its waiting list. Most are boys who need male mentors.
If you’re hesitant about mentoring, Denn has a couple words of advice: “Do it.” —Marianne Nagengast