As children prepare to head back to school, Big Brothers Big Sisters issues a call to action to the community to Start Something to keep Lorain County students on track to graduate.
The donor-supported mentoring organization carefully matches children with volunteer mentors in one-to-one staff-guided long-term mentoring relationships. The agency provides ongoing support to the volunteers, mentees and mentors throughout the course of each match to keep the mentoring friendship going strong.
Big Brothers Big Sisters’ 2011 Youth Outcomes Report, released earlier this year, shows statistically significant improvements for youth during their first year of enrollment in the mentoring program in educational success as well as avoidance of risky behaviors and socio-emotional competency, such as educational expectations. Youth progress in these areas is linked to longer-term outcomes, such as high school graduation, avoidance of juvenile delinquency, and college or job readiness.
“The Big Brothers Big Sisters Youth Outcomes Survey is an important tool in our commitment to hold ourselves accountable to the children, families and mentors we serve as well as the donors who support our programs,” said Marcus Madison. “We collect and use data to refine and improve our programs to achieve the greatest success for children enrolled in Big Brothers Big Sisters’ long-term, staff-supported one-to-one mentoring programs.”
The proprietary 2011 Big Brothers Big Sisters Youth Outcomes Report found statistically significant improvement in Big Brothers Big Sisters community-based mentees in three areas—educational-related success, avoidance of risky behaviors and socio-emotional competency. Statistically significant improvement in school-based Big Brothers Big Sisters mentees’ attitudes was found in two areas—educational-related success and socio-emotional competency.
• 94.5% and 95.2% of youth maintained an average or above average score(1) or indicated improvement in the area of educational success for Big Brothers Big Sisters community-based and school-based programs, respectively;
• 97.9% and 96.6% of youth maintained an average or above average score(1) or indicated improvement in the area of socio-emotional competence for Big Brothers Big Sisters community-based and its school-based programs, respectively;
• 88.8% and 83.4% of youth maintained an average or above average score(1) or indicated improvement in the area of avoidance of risky behaviors for Big Brothers Big Sisters community-based and school-based programs, respectively.
The proprietary Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Youth Outcomes Survey, developed with the support of some of the nation’s leading experts in child development, tracks the nationwide mentoring program’s “Littles’” attitudes about eight specific measures:
- Social acceptance
- Parental trust
- Scholastic competency
- Presence of a special adult
- Educational expectations
- Attitudes toward risk (including smoking, drinking, drugs, skipping school, hitting, breaking rules in school, and being late for school)
- Grades (academic achievement)
(1) Maintaining and improving was determined by whether a child scored at or above the mean at baseline and maintained that score at follow-up or had a higher score at follow-up compared to baseline.