Mentors encouraged to sign up for Big Brothers Big Sisters and make a difference for community’s children

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Summer is merely weeks away and children will soon have more time on their hands. But, adults can use this to their advantage and help the community’s youth.

Carol Sporleder’s friendship with a fifth grader named Dion makes a difference.

“We were matched in the school-based program,” Sporleder explained. “I would go have lunch with her every Wednesday. I started it thinking it would be the highlight of her week and it quickly became the highlight of my week.”

Carol and Dion matched in October 2014; Dion was in third grade.

“Third grade to fifth grade is a lot of changes, it’s a pretty critical time in a little girl’s life,” Sporleder said.

But, Sporleder was there, and she’s been there every day since.

“Mentors are the difference,” Sporleder said. “They’re the difference some of these kids have between taking the left path and the right path.”

Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Alabama want to make a difference.

“A lot of our kids, their day-to-day life is very different from a lot of ours,” Benjamin Moody, Big Brothers, Big Sisters Program Coordinator, said. “They see things that would quite frankly be shocking to a lot of us. Or, sometimes their parents, a lot of times they don’t have time for them, they have other siblings, their parents are working multiple jobs.”

Summer’s coming and it’s a time for the program’s 248 littles to spend time with their bigs. But, around 100 more littles are waiting for a mentor.

“You don’t have to do a lot of big things, you don’t have to go to Shakalaka every weekend, you don’t have to go to the library every weekend, a lot of our kids are just looking for someone to talk to,” Moody explained.

Big Brothers, Big Sisters has options for mentors to do with their littles during the summer. Each mentor is required to spend a minimum of four to six hours per month with their child.

If you would like to know more, visit bbbsna.org.