FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 17, 2018

Big Brothers Big Sisters and Island Savings reflect on eight years of partnership resulting in over 1,800 mentorship matches

DUNCAN, B.C. – Island Savings, a division of First West Credit Union and all three Big Brothers Big Sisters’ (BBBS) agencies on Vancouver Island gathered together to celebrate eight valuable years of partnership and to announce a significant financial milestone- $500,000 in cumulative financial support provided by Island Savings to the organizations.

Although the financial figure is significant, it is more important to consider what that support has enabled the BBBS agencies to do. Since the partnership began in 2010, the agencies have been able to match over 1,800 children to a positive caring mentor through their in-school mentoring program. The program provides youth with a role model and a friend to talk to and share the experiences of growing up within school grounds. For one hour a week, mentors meet with their mentee and engage in activities such as board games, crafts or simply hanging out on school grounds.

“When we entered into the partnership with Island Savings, I don’t think we truly understood the impact it would have on our in-school mentoring program and our agencies,” says Jennifer Kemp, Executive Director at BBBS Central Vancouver Island. “From amazing, dedicated volunteers, above and beyond support of events, collaboration on  initiatives, a sounding board for ideas and challenges we faced, and most of all a true understanding and appreciation for the work we do and the importance of our mission that every child who needs a mentor, has a mentor.”

In addition to financial support, Island Savings staff have been passionate about supporting BBBS agencies in their communities by serving as in-school mentors, board members and volunteers at BBBS events.

“We can all relate to the power of mentorship and have seen time and time again the positive role that mentors play in the lives of children,” says Randy Bertsch, President of Island Savings. “We are extremely grateful for this partnership which supports the hard-working employees and volunteers at our local BBBS agencies and the important work that they do.”

This special announcement comes during National Big Brothers Big Sisters month which serves as an opportunity to demonstrate the need for positive role models in the lives of children-at-risk through community programming. To learn more about volunteering with your local BBBS agency visit: https://cvi.bigbrothersbigsisters.ca/