September 2020


Hello Friends!

When our team had its most recent in-person meeting on March 16, Nor would we have thought that we would continue to work remotely through the rest of 2020. In addition, that moving towards virtual meetings would become the norm rather than the exception. Our virtual school/site-based meetings that we pulled together to finish the school year is now how we are starting the school year.

There is no doubt that our kids need our program. Today more than ever! In addition to their parent(s) and/or their grandparent(s), kids need someone who is there to cheer them on, to listen to their fears and anxieties, and to dream about the future. To inspire them and give them hope. We know that kids’ lives are improved for today and for all their tomorrows when a mentor enters their lives.

Have you ever considered that YOU might need our program too? Have you thought of how your life could benefit from being a volunteer? According to the Mayo Clinic, there are six significant ways that volunteering will CHANGE YOUR LIFE:

  1. Decreases your risk of depression
  2. Gives you a sense of purpose and teaches you valuable skills
  3. Helps you stay physically and mentally active
  4. Reduces your stress level
  5. May help you live longer
  6. Helps you meet others and develop new relationships

Please consider joining our Bigs, who are standing with our kids, defending their potential. You can fulfill all our requirements without leaving your home. In fact, you can mentor this entire school year without leaving your home. If you have a couple of hours a month, you’ll change your Little’s life, and they’ll change yours. For a brighter today and better tomorrow, now is the time for YOU to become a Big. 

Jackie Johnson
Executive Director
MEET KIM VAN DUSEN AND YULIE

Kim Van Dusen and Yulie and coming up on one year together in our Bigs on Campus program. These two love doing arts and crafts and finding other fun projects to do like making gingerbread houses! Kim is also our graphic designer!

When school closed this past March, it meant these two weren’t able to see each other in person, but that didn’t stop them from having a great time meeting virtually! They did video calls, completed the BBBS bingo card, and so much more! We are very excited to watch this friendship continue to grow this year and the years to come!


Jon & Cassie Notsch and Deontay are!

A Big welcome to one of our newest matches: Jon & Cassie Notsch and Deontay! Jon and Cassie Notsch were recently matched with their Little Brother Deontay! Together they are excited to bake, go to the zoo, and spend time outside! As you are considering being a Big, check out our current list of new Matches.

We would also like to congratulate these Matches who are celebrating milestone anniversaries! We ask all Bigs to commit to at least one year of mentorship - that one year of consistency makes a BIG difference in the life of a child.
Go Big For Kids' Sake is Presented by:
WE ARE HIRING!

Help us spread the word!
 
Big Brothers Big Sisters currently is seeking applications for a Community Engagement Manager to support our critical mission of defending the potential of youth.

The Community Engagement Manager will be responsible for implementing the strategy to achieve marketing and volunteer recruitment goals of the agency and will be responsible to execute the plan; primarily responsible for volunteer recruitment, bringing them to the point of inquiry. Volunteers who chose not to be a mentor (Big) will be managed by this position.

This is a fun and challenging role and an opportunity for someone who is an influencer with strategic vision and strong sales & marketing skills. We offer flexibility and a solid team of people, staff and volunteers, who deeply care about and live our mission, daily. Come join us! Or pass along to someone you know.

Those interested should provide a cover letter and resume by Sept. 30, 2020 to Brenda Jacobson, Advancement Director. Applicants should email all documents or send questions they might have to Brenda@BigDefenders.org.
URGENT: BIGS NEEDED NOW!

As the nation navigates its way through crisis, we are all feeling the toll of the unknown. The kids served through the Big Brothers Big Sisters program are no different. Now, more than ever, they need the friendship & support of a caring mentor. Our mission is CRITICAL- join us!

We especially need Bigs for our school and site based program. Visitors are currently not allowed in the schools- but you can meet with your Little before, after or during school through your device online. Your consistent friendship will mean the world to a Little who is living with so much unknown!

The first step is to let us know you're interested and we will take it from there, visit www.BigDefenders.org to learn more!
THANK YOU HORIZON ROOFING!



This month’s Partner Spotlight goes to Horizon Roofing! This incredible company has been supporting BBBS in various ways. When our Matches were able to meet in person again, outside and socially distanced, Horizon Roofing stepped up and printed a banner to celebrate and support these new Matches.

Kurt Scepaniak, President/CEO of Horizon Roofing, serves as an Advisory Board Member offering invaluable insights and guidance to the mission of BBBS. They have also put a roof over our heads, literally, when they worked over the summer to make repairs and upgrades to the roof of the building our agency is a tenant in. We are very proud to partner with Horizon Roofing!

We are grateful for all our Community Partners. Check out this list and the next time you are at that business or organization, please thank them for standing with kids!
 
If you are interested in serving on an event or sponsorship committee or have questions about it contact Emily Steinmetz at 320-258-4515 or Emily@BigDefenders.org
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Jenna Binsfeld, Peggy Brown, Debbie Clausen, Kevin Fitzpatrick (Treasurer), Patty Funk, Jeff Gannon, Lee Hurd, Courtney Kunkel, Holly Lee, Bill Martin-Chaffee, Vince Mohs, Curran Poganski,
Marie Primus (Past President), Luke Riordan, Rick Roehl, Alex Schoephoerster (Vice Pres.),
Christie Schulte, Peter Spaniol (Secretary), Vicky Welty (President)

ADVISORY COUNCIL
Barb Anderson, Scott Bement, Mimi Bitzan, Mark Coborn, Joe Francis, Brad Goskowicz, Keith Julson,
Shelly Bauerly Kopel, Gary Marsden, Karla Myres, Steve Sauer, Kurt Scepaniak, Joyce Schlough,
John Schnettler, Rob Schumann, Eric Stalboerger, Perian Stavrum, Mark Traut, Joan Vincent,
Bob Walter, Don Watkins, Sue Wendt, Mike Ziemann