The City of South Fulton was set to kick off its campaign to recruit 60 mentors for local youth just as the first case of coronavirus in city limits was announced. Now leaders are regrouping and announcing a virtual event to share the details of the city’s partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta (BBBSMA), and how residents can get involved.
For six decades, BBBSMA has been a much-needed resource for some of the most vulnerable children in the local community. However, the number of children on the organization’s waitlist is outpacing the number of mentors stepping up to volunteer.
In South Fulton alone, nearly 200 youth are waiting to be paired with a mentor in the program. City leaders are asking local residents to answer the call for volunteers and help BBBSMA reach its 60th anniversary recruitment goals.
“I am excited to partner with Big Brothers Big Sisters for the #COSFGACares 60 matches for 60 years campaign,” said Mayor William “Bill” Edwards. “As BBBSMA celebrates its diamond anniversary, we get a chance to highlight the need for mentors for 60 children located in 10 zip codes who are waiting to get matched with a mentor.”
The organization currently serves approximately 1,400 children from 12 metro Atlanta counties on an annual basis. The results have been transformative.
“Over 97 percent avoid the juvenile justice system and over 98 percent are promoted to the next grade level on time,” said Kwame Johnson, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta president and CEO. “This is what can happen through one-to-one mentoring relationships.”
Mayor Edwards 60-for-60 Mentoring Information Session will take place on Thursday, May 7 at 6 p.m. via a live online broadcast. In addition to Johnson, he’ll be joined by District 1 Councilwoman Dr. Catherine F. Rowell, a former big sister, Juliet Udeochu, BBBSMA volunteer recruitment manager and John Collins, power forward for the Atlanta Hawks.
Those interested should register via Eventbrite to attend. A link to join the event will be distributed to registrants on the day of the event.
Photos: Edwards, Johnson and Collins