It’s been a long process, but I finally have been matched with a “Little” with Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS)! You may have read about the beginning of this whole thing a couple of months ago. Yep, it took about 10 weeks, but it is totally worth it!
Getting to This Point
I filled out the first volunteer application in mid-July, sent in all of the requested paperwork, asked 5 of my friends/co-workers (blogging buddies) to fill out reference forms, and took a quick online class and quiz all within a few weeks. Next, I was interviewed by a match specialist and was officially approved. Then sat around waiting to be accepted and matched. That all took about 2 months.
Once they called me with a prospect about a month later, I accepted, his parents accepted, and then we met in person a couple of weeks later at the BBBS office for a few minutes. I had my first real outing with him last week and again yesterday. 🙂
My Match Experience So Far
So, I obviously can’t give out too many details so nobody’s privacy is messed with, but I can write about general stuff. I’ve been matched with a young man (about 4th grade) who is as quiet as I am loud. He’s also as dark-skinned as I am ghost white. So we make a fun pair, LOL. Oh, and he seems to like me. That’s important. 🙂
Our first outing was last week. I’m supposed to keep everything to as close to free as possible. So I used a gift card and a coupon to take him to Chili’s and then he picked our activity – disc golf! I mentioned it when we met as something my husband and I played before, and my Little thought it sounded fun. Yay! It was really wet and Chili’s took a while, so we only played about 5 holes on the disc golf course, but it was still a lot of fun and he would like to go back sometime. 😀
He didn’t say much during our actual time (he’s a major introvert and it will take time to open up), but his mom says that he bragged about me to everybody afterwards – so yay!!!
Yesterday, we went to an 8th grade football game that was close by. He loves football and the weather finally cooled down to a nice 70 around here. We had a lot of fun and even grabbed some snacks at the field. It was relaxing. He said he had a lot of fun. I did too. I think we’ll work out just fine.
Since I am out of town next week for The Financial Blogger Conference, we’ve already set up our next get together for the week after.
I think this program is like a ton of volunteer programs I’ve worked with before – needed since these kids really want someone to hang out with, overloaded since there are more Littles than Bigs, and everyone is doing the absolute best they can. I would totally suggest it for anybody who thinks that they’d enjoy working with a kid! I think my Little is going to help me just as much or more than I help him.
Are you looking into any volunteer positions lately? It makes the world feel a little better for me. 🙂
FYI: I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 a year. I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $80,000-$100,000 through blogging, a rental home, and professional pet sitting. If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you). I even have all of my favorite tools on a resource page – I hope they help you too.
This all gives me the time to be with my aging family members, the flexibility to stay close with my friends and family, and it should help if we finally get pregnant too! Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!