Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Pittsburgh Launches New Mentor Program Focused on LGBTQ+ Youth
Defenders of potential so that every child succeeds in life. That’s our bottom line; daily goal of BBBSPGH.
“When we work to be defenders of potential for our area’s youth, we truly mean ALL youth, including those in the LGBTQ+ community,” said Becky Flaherty, CEO of BBBSPGH. “We are confident that this new program - which we are calling simply “BIG SIBLINGS” - will bring crucial guidance and one-on-one support to these sometimes overlooked or under resourced children and teenagers.”
After two years of planning and close collaboration with Pittsburgh’s Hugh Lane Wellness Foundation, BBBSPGH leaders are excited to bring the BIG SIBLINGS program to the public. BBBSPGH traditionally matches youth with adult mentors of the same gender. In BIG SIBLINGS, that may not always be the case. Matches will be made based on the location, interest, preferences, and gender identity of both the adult volunteer and youth mentee.
The charge for BIG SIBLNGS mentors will be to provide a positive influence, answer the hard questions, and serve as role models that inspire mentees to be themselves. The goal is to enrich the lives of both Big and Little through their match.
The BIG SIBLINGS program is now seeking individual adult volunteers from the LGBTQ+ community, as well as corporations, to serve as mentors to our area’s youth who identify themselves as being in this community. Volunteer mentors will complete the standard, comprehensive screening, evaluation, and training process that all BBBSPGH volunteers must accomplish before being matched with a Little. Ongoing and constant staff support will also assist in ensuring BIG SIBLINGS matches are successful and beneficial to the adult and young person.