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Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Brazos Valley in need of male volunteers

Posted at 5:51 PM, Jan 02, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-03 13:27:31-05

BRAZOS COUNTY, Texas — January is National Mentorship Month, and you can get involved right here in Brazos County with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Brazos Valley.

In the new year, we try new activities and hobbies, and becoming a mentor could be one to add to your list.

The program serves ages six to 21 and is currently in need of more male volunteers to match its male student population.

“They ask for mentors,” says Terry Dougherty, Program Director, Big Brothers Big Sisters.

“They want to be in the program. They are motivated to try new things, to meet new people, to have new influences in their lives.”

“Being a positive male role model is very key to people’s lives,” says Robert Costello, Big Brother.

Robert Costello is a mentor with the program and shares the importance of having a male role model in one’s life.

“Based on my personal experience, my father passed away when I was 13 years old and I just learned the benefit of seeing other male figures and role modeling from them and seeing what they do, especially if you see they are good fathers or good people in the community, you kind of see what they do and learn from that,” says Costello.

Costello has been matched with his little brother for two and a half years.

He shared that even a simple “I hope you have a good day at school” text can go a very long way for a kid struggling.

“They end up doing better things in their own life, going to school, jobs, better self-esteem,” says Costello.

“They just have someone they can look up to and it doesn’t have to be someone that’s biological.”

Costello says it’s important to just stay in contact and be present for your little mentee.

“We want to work hard going into this year intentionally recruiting male mentors, especially men of color because we know the importance of that too,” says Dougherty.

“To have a mentor that youth can fully relate to.”

“I benefit just as much or maybe even more than the littles sometimes,” says Costello.

“I’m definitely doing it to be a positive role model and help an individual succeed in life but I’m also gaining a lot myself.”

For more information on how to become a mentor, you can learn more here.