Big Brothers Big Sisters FAQ’s
Volunteer Enrollment Questions
1) How do I begin the process of becoming a Big Brother/Big Sister?
Please contact our office at 740-773-2447, toll free at 1-800-888-6335 or visit our website at http://www.bbbssco.org/ or visiit our Facebook page. Feel free to also stop by our office located at 173 West Second St. Chillicothe, OH. 45601 to inquire about information.
2) What is the minimum/maximum age for someone to volunteer?
A volunteer must be at least 21 years old. Our agency doesn’t have a maximum age limit.
3) How long does the screening process take in order to become a Big Brother/Big Sister?
This typically is a six-week process, but can happen sooner. This process is dependent upon the time in which an individual inquires about our program and is actually matched with a little brother/little sister. This also depends on how long it takes for a criminal background check to be performed.
4) Do all volunteers get accepted?
This is based upon the results of the background check as well as discretion of the agency.
5) Why is there an abundance of paper work when enrolling in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program?
This abundance of paper work is present not only to protect the volunteer, but also to protect the child. In gathering information, our agency is able to make the best match in a healthy safe environment.
6) What is the age range of the children in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program?
The children are eligible for enrollment from the age of 7 – 14.
7) How often each week should I see my Little Brother/Little Sister?
We recommend 2-5 hours per week or making contact at least once a week. This contact is very flexible and can be made just by calling one another or participating in activities together.
8) How much money should I expect to spend?
This is at the volunteer’s discretion, but the spending of money isn’t expected. Please do not purchase expensive gifts for your little brother/little sister.
9) What are the benefits for both children and adults participating in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program?
Each develops a long lasting friendship. Children involved within this program know they have someone who’s going to be there for them. This is a rewarding experience for both parties.
What to Expect as a Volunteer
10) How often should I meet with my Match Support Specialist?
Regular contact is maintained with the agency Match Support Specialist by responding to calls and letters. Once a month contact is recommended. However, the first month of the match requires weekly contact.
11) Does your agency provide someone with whom I could speak with if the match isn’t going well?
Please contact the agency Match Support Specialist if this occurs.
12) Are there any restrictions that your agency places on the activities I do with my Little Brother/Little Sister?
This is up to the discretion of the parents. The only rule that our agency has is that there are no overnights for the first six months of a match.
13) Are there any suggested activities that I should do with my Little Brother/Little Sister?
Our agency suggests participating in activities in which the little brother/little sister has interests. It’s helpful to plan activities together in order to fulfill these interests. We also recommend activities that both the volunteer and little brother/little sister can participate. The agency offers activities throughout the year and we recommend the matches attend.
14) If a problem occurs with the family, what should I do?
Please contact your Match Support Specialist, or Assistant Director immediately. As a volunteer, it is not recommended that you take on family responsibilities.
15) Should I help my Little Brother/Little Sister with their homework?
Yes, because this allows for one on one time for the volunteer and the child to interact with each other.
16) Should I educate my Little Brother/Little Sister on certain topics such as drugs and alcohol?
The parent will discuss with you what topics you can discuss with their child.
17) How can I ensure my child’s safety in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program?
Each potential volunteer completes a screening process and is responsible for maintaining contact with the agency once approved. The Match Support Specialist maintains regular contact with the volunteer, the child, and the parents as well as meets in person with all parties every three months.
18) How does a child qualify for the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program?
There are several ways that a child may qualify for enrollment in Big Brothers Big Sisters. In order to determine eligibility please contact your local Big Brothers Big Sisters agency.
19) Is the Big Brother/Big Sister a babysitter?
No. Please remember to make arrangements to have an adult present at the home when the volunteer brings the little brother/little sister home.
20) Can siblings and or friends of my child participate in activities provided by the volunteer?
Please remember that the relationship exists between your child and the big brother/big sister. Children not enrolled in Big Brothers Big Sisters program are prohibited from participating in activities with the Big Brother/Big Sister. This includes siblings, friends, or other family members.
21) Why does a child need a mentor if they have aunts and uncles?
Many adults may have their own families that require their time. It is also important that little brothers/little sisters have a positive role model outside of the family to look up to and that they can depend on.
22) What should I do if something about the relationship concerns me?
Please contact your Match Support Specialist immediately.
23) What are the different programs offered by Big Brothers/Big Sisters?
Other programs offered through Big Brothers/Big Sisters include Big Couples, Big for a Day, Turning Point, School Based Mentoring, and Mentoring Children of Prisoners/AMACHI. Please refer to our website under “programs” for a complete description of each program.