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Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana has more than 1,400 kids waiting for mentors



Indianapolis, Indiana – More mentors are required to join the team at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana.

Over 1,400 children in central Indiana have yet to be connected with a Big during National Mentor Month in January.

According to Rachel Watts, the organization’s marketing coordinator, the program is for any family with a child who requires the presence of a second caring adult.

For almost four years, Jahnavi, 16, has been coupled with Stephanie, a Big. Jahnavi, according to Stephanie, is her first Little.

“I have had mentors in my life, and one of my mentors has said, ‘You should always have a mentor and be a mentor.’ That stuck with me,” Stephanie explained. “I moved from Anderson to Indy and found my commute went down a bit, so I had a little more time and wanted to give some of that back.”

At the very least once per month, Jahnavi and Stephanie get together.

“We’re definitely friends, but she’s also like my big sister in the way that she gives advice and the way she cheers me on,” Jahnavi said. “She generally knows more than me and I respect that a lot.”

You must be at least 19 years old, pass a background check, and commit to the program for a full year in order to become a Big Brother or Big Sister.

The organization, according to Watts, needs more male mentors. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana’s Jackie Lai, the senior director of community engagement, concurs.

“Of the 1,400-some kids that are waiting to be matched with a Big, 80% are young boys,” Lai said.