Big Brothers and Big Sisters Lacombe is looking for 40 mentors over the course of 40 days and to ‘Turn the Town Teal’. Several local businesses in Lacombe, Bentley, Alix, and Clive will be ‘turning teal’ sporting teal coloured decorations to help share the word about Big Brothers and Big Sisters Lacombe.
“It's really to just advocate and share information on what mentorship can do in our community through Big Brothers and Big Sisters, and of course mentoring in everyone's lives. If you kind of look around town right now, there's lots of amazing businesses that already have their windows decorated or their front entrances and it's just wonderful to see everybody reaching out and really wanting to be a part of Turn the Town Teal,” said Executive Director of Lacombe Big Brothers and Big Sisters, Breanna Berthiaume.
As for 40 mentors in 40 days, Berthiaume says the organization is running a little behind with 5 inquiries but she is confident they will be able to catch up.
“If we can do an inquiry a day, we are on target,” she added.
Currently, the organization has a mentor waiting list of 34 kids and youth.
“We have a pretty extensive waiting list. We have a waiting list for our community-based program as well as our in-school mentoring program. We're looking for mentors and volunteers of all sorts that are able to provide and give back in whichever capacity works best for them. We've even had some teens reaching out and wanting to mentor and seeing how those fit into their lifestyle as well,” said Berthiaume.
Berthiaume says Big Brothers and Big Sisters tries to make mentoring as easy as possible with a variety of ways that people can help out.
“We're really flexible and really open to volunteers who want to give back and work with youth and making that fit into our mentorship,” said Berthiaume.
Currently, mentors can choose community-based, school, site-based, and virtual mentoring.
“Our community based program, it's out in the community for one to two hours a week or 6 to 8 hours a month depending—some people work shift work of course. It's doing likeminded activities. It could be just going for ice cream, or shooting hoops, or it could be building a resume. It's across the board and it's based on similar interest and mentoring style to how we match,” explained Berthiaume.
“Our in school mentoring is one hour a week on school property. Some people choose a school that's close to their work. So, they go for their lunch hour or close to maybe where they reside and they have a spot with a kit so they'll be crafts, games, and baking and different things that they can do on school property. They're able to do that for one hour a week.”
“We have our site-based source, site base is actually located here at the Bamford House and so we have some matches that choose that program and they do one hour a week at our facility.”
“Then we still are offering our virtual mentorship and that one we've seen where people use it if they're kind of working away or you know have been going through sicknesses and stuff like that but still want to be able to give back.”
Berthiaume hopes those considering mentoring consider that it will be a rewarding experience for both the youth and the mentor.
“I think that's something people miss. Our volunteers actually get a positive experience out of it as well and then of course, it impacts our community in so many different ways,” she added.