Sports Buddies is one of four core youth mentoring programs offered by Big Brothers Big Sisters. Sports Buddies activities are designed to deepen mentoring relationships while supporting self-confidence, goal setting, collaboration, skill development, and healthy lifestyles. Activities last an average of 3-4 hours and range from spectator sports such as professional, collegiate and high school hockey, basketball, football, soccer, lacrosse and baseball to participatory activities such as capture the flag, baseball, Frisbee, basketball and kickball. During each activity, Big Brothers Big Sisters' staff observe the matches to monitor and support the development of each mentoring relationship.
The Sports Buddies Mentoring Program provides mentoring for children facing adversity, especially boys who might otherwise have to be turned away or wait months to be matched with a mentor because of the high need for more male volunteers. In addition, the program provides unique opportunities for children from low-income families to experience participatory and spectator sports. Many of these children do not have an opportunity to join sports teams or to otherwise participate in the wide variety of athletics available to them through Sports Buddies.
These mentoring relationships will impact youth by helping them to:
- Improve their sense of themselves and sense of future.
- Form positive relationships with peers and family.
- Avoid risky or delinquent behavior.
- Achieve educational success.