Posted by Vi Hughes on Mar 12, 2019
This Tuesday we heard from Kerry Woodland, Director of the Boys and Girls Clubs Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Edmonton and Area. She said that the two groups merged into one eight years ago in the Edmonton area. They provide services for youth between the ages of six and twenty four, such as providing after school activities and connecting them with mentors. They have about three thousand volunteers who help them out each year along with one hundred and twenty full time staff and a budget last year of six point eight million.
They provide after school services in many locations throughout the Edmonton area, sometimes in schools and sometimes in their stand-alone locations. They currently have reading programs in fifty local schools. They also provide one on one mentoring and work with new immigrants to help them bridge their connection to the community. For their mentoring program, they interview the child’s family and do their best to match them with an appropriate mentor.  
They are always looking for volunteers and prefer to have people who can make a one year commitment of their time as it takes time to build a relationship with a child and their family.  Volunteers must complete an in-depth enrolment process, submit an application, provide three references and go through the Vulnerable Persons Police check and meet several other requirements. Their volunteers range in age from teenagers to people in their seventies.  She asked that if we know of anyone who would make a good mentor for a young person, please encourage them to look into helping them out.