Volunteer your time

You have a big opportunity in front of you—to not only impact a child’s life today, but to transform their potential for tomorrow.

Become a Mentor...Give a Little Something Back

Being a Big Brother or Big Sister is one of the most enjoyable things you’ll ever do. Not to mention, one of the most fulfilling. You have the opportunity to help shape a child’s future for the better by empowering them to achieve.

Today's youth face a variety of challenges, and being matched with a Big Brother or Big Sister can help them navigate these challenges and reach their potential. When children and teens have the influence of a caring adult, they are more likely to avoid risky behaviors and to focus on academics. And the best part is, it’s actually a lot of fun. You and your Little can share the kinds of activities you already like to do. Play sports together. Go on a hike. Read books. Eat a pizza with extra anchovies. Or just give some advice and inspiration. Whatever it is you enjoy, odds are you’ll enjoy them even more with your Little—and you’ll be making a life-changing impact.

Basic Volunteer Requirements

  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Be willing to commit to meeting regularly with your Little (at least four hours per month)
  • Decide whether you’d like to participate in the community-based program (one calendar year commitment) from the date you are matched or site-based program (one school year commitment)
  • Participate in a volunteer orientation (at your own pace from anywhere)
  • Take our required online Pre-match training course (at your own pace from anywhere)
  • Provide three to four references 
  • Consent to a background check
  • You must be willing to come to our office, located at 565 E. Tennessee St in Tallahassee, for an extended personal interview

Important Note about Becoming a Big

Big Brothers Big Sisters strives for stable, long lasting one-to-one relationships for the youth we serve. Due to this, we will not sign off on community service hours for college students until you have completed the required commitment of one school year.

Why do we need Male Mentors to be Big Brothers?

More than 80% of our children waiting for a Big are boys, but only 2 out of every 10 inquiries to volunteer come from men. Research shows that having the positive influence of a Big Brother makes a real difference in a boy's life. So join the hundreds of thousands of volunteers that give a young person someone to look up to. And learn why so many are now saying, “I get back so much more than I give.”

A Call to Men of Color

Disproportionately the children we serve and those waiting to be matched are African-American and Hispanic boys. Their parents seek our support, knowing a Big Brother can recognize their son's potential and model positive choices that put him on the path for success in and out of school.

BIG FAQ

Who are the Bigs in the program?

Our Bigs come from diverse backgrounds just like our Littles. They are regular people, just like you. You don’t need any special degrees or job skills. You just have to want to positively impact a young person. Role models come in all shapes and sizes, and you could be a perfect fit.

When can I see my Little?

As a Big/Little team, you decide together what you want to do and then your Little gets approval from his or her parent. We recommend that you keep a consistent schedule of outings and get together on a regular basis. Your local agency will provide more guidance on this. The outings will also depend on the comfort level of your Little’s parents, your Little, and you.

How much money should I spend?

The quality of the time you invest with your Little is more important than the amount of money you spend. That’s why we don’t encourage spending a lot of money on your outings. The goal of the relationship is to help your Little see the world through a different lens so you can inspire your Little to become something they never thought possible. If you are going to spend money, we encourage you to seek out low-cost activities, especially in the beginning. Play a game together, or share that pizza that you were going to have for lunch anyway. Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies offer donor-supported group activities that are a great way to meet other Bigs and Littles. As a Big, you may also receive notices for free tickets to cultural and sports activities for you both to enjoy.

What are some good ideas for outings with my Little?   *Community-Based Only

Share an activity that gives you something in common to talk about. Go to the library, check out a book and read together. Go Fishing.  Play a sport together.  Play a board game. Go on a nature walk. Hit a bucket of golf balls at the local driving range. Take a ride in the car with the radio on and talk about the music you like. You want to select activities that give each of you a chance to learn more about one another. For children, playing can be learning. Most important: keep it simple and enjoy yourselves!

Can I bring my spouse, a friend, or a family member on outings?

In the beginning it’s most important for you and your Little to get to know each other. This can happen best on a one-to-one basis. However, over time it’s also valuable for your Little to get to know the people who are important to you. Just keep in mind that if you’re spending lots of time with others, your Little may begin to feel jealous or neglected. The main focus is the friendship you develop with your Little.

What kind of support can I expect from Big Brothers Big Sisters once I get matched?

Once you are matched with your Little, a Match Support Specialist from the agency will be in regular contact with you to provide assistance and give feedback. Any time you are unsure about what to do or how to handle a situation, you will have a Match Support Specialist there to help. They’ll help you with ideas for activities, guidance for handling possible difficult situations, and feedback on how you are making a difference.

Will I become a replacement parent?

No, Littles have a parent or guardian in their life already. What they need is a Big to spend quality, one-on-one time with them. Someone to have fun with, someone they can confide in, someone like you!

Changing Lives for the Better, Forever

Big Brothers Big Sisters seeks to change the lives of children facing adversity for the better, forever. We operate in communities all across the United States - urban and rural, Big and Little. Our mentors work with children in the community, in their schools, and many places in between.

Our unique brand of one-to-one mentoring has a Big impact all over the nation.

What do we achieve?

Big Brothers Big Sisters helps children achieve success in school, helps them avoid risky behaviors such as getting into fights and trying drugs and alcohol, and helps them improve their self-confidence. We hold ourselves accountable to our supporters by regularly measuring our impact

Whom do we serve?

Big Brothers Big Sisters seeks to change the lives of children facing adversity between 6 and 18 years of age. Our network of volunteers, donors and supporters comes from all walks of life, all backgrounds, all corners of the country.

What do we do?

Our unique brand of one-to-one mentoring, in which a child facing adversity is carefully matched with a caring adult mentor in a relationship supported by professional Big Brothers Big Sisters staff members, changes lives for the better forever.

Big meets Little

Big Brothers Big Sisters targets the children who need us most, including those living in single parent homes, growing up in poverty and coping with parental incarceration. Starting something begins with finding a great match between a Big and a Little. Making these matches, and performing all the background work involved with them, is possible because of donations from people like you. It’s also why we’re able to offer such a wide variety of programs that pair children, ages 6 through 18, with role models in one-to-one relationships.