Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Big Brothers Big Sisters

Sorry for the rapid-fire posting this morning...I'm almost done, I promise.

Since moving to Indiana, and now that the wedding is over, I've had a lot of free time that I'm not really used to. I wish I could say that I'm filling that time with fabulous friends and activities, but I'm not. I've had a really difficult time meeting people and making friends here - something I've never experienced before. Part of the reason I've had difficulty making friends is my job - it's relatively solitary, and I really only interact with my students every day. That being said...I'm lonely, which sucks.

I've been wanting to spend some of that extra time volunteering, and I'm thinking of volunteering to be a Big Sister through Big Brothers Big Sisters. My question to you is...have any of you done this? What has your experience been like? There are a few different types of Big Sisters...and I'm not really sure which would be best. I guess the two I'm thinking of is a Community Big, which appears to be the standard Big - a one year minimum, eight hours of contact a month. The other is a School Big, which would match me with an elementary school student. One school year commitment, one hour of contact per week on school property during the school day. This one sounds interesting to me, especially considering that I work at a school...but then I realized, hey, I work at a school. How could I slip away for one hour during the (already short) school day when I need that time to see my own students?

I think I'm going to contact them about being a Community Big. I know for sure that we will be here until May 2011 at the minimum, as that's when Mr. Smith will graduate from grad school.

What are your thoughts? Anyone who has experience being either a Big or Little, let me know. I'd love to get more info.

9 comments:

Jenn said...

good for you!! i did a program similar to this when I lived in atlanta - and it was such a good experience. i understand the lonely thing too - i have had the same problem ever since i moved to wisconsin to live with hubby (then boyfriend). my friends are all in chicago or scattered around the US and it's hard to find time to make friends here. hang in there. :) also - i am thinking i'm going to macy's over lunch today to check out the clinique stuff. i forgot i still had $100 in gift cards for macy's left over for wedding gifts and found them today when going thru my wallet - SCORE! hubby has hopefully forgotten all about them by this point.

Candice said...

I think that sounds like a great idea! I've always thought about getting involved with Big Brothers Big Sister, but I've never actually done it. I can't wait to hear what you think.

I totally understand what you mean about feeling lonely. I stayed in my college town after graduating because my husband got a job here. The problem is all of my friends moved away! I hope things get better soon. I don't know if you guys are involved in church of any kind, but that's where my husband and I have finally begun to make a couple of friends. We joined a sunday school class of young married couples, and it's really been a blessing to us. I hope things start looking up soon:)

Also, thanks for the encouraging comment. It helps so much to hear from other people.

Jenn said...

Unfortunately - i'm an idiot. There are 2 malls within 10 minutes of where I work and I figured the one I went to had a Macy's. WRONG. Boston Store. I will go to Macy's at the other mall tomorrow! So...I made a little stop at the coach store and picked up a promotion gift for myself. Keep in mind I got promoted almost 3 months ago. Never too late. :)

Lucky in Love said...

Just wanted to stop by and say hi! I'm a mid-western girl myself...lived in Indiana for all my life...until about 2 1/2 years ago when I moved to Cleveland. I lived in Speedway. Just wanted to say I feel ya on the whole "I have no friends" thing. Meeting people at my work totally sucks because it's mostly middle aged men! Yuck! :) My husband is an attorney...so we hang with his friends from work sometimes....but they're his friends...you know??

Volunteering should really help! I'm thinking of joining Junior League. I did BBBS in college while I was about Purdue. I was only able to do the lunch program you were describing....but it was really fun. You will definitely enjoy it.

Good luck...and let me know how it goes!

kilax said...

Hi there! I saw your comment at Newlyweds next door. I live near Chicago. That's kind of close ;)

My husband and I are both NOT from the area we live in. We really had to make an effort to meet people - we did bowling, community classes, talking to neigbors, meeting fellow bloggers... we've had some successes, and some failures ;)

I think being a Big Sister sounds awesome! I have not done it, but the School Big sounds cool!

kilax said...

Oops, I left the wrong link - I left yours! http://www.ilaxstudio.com/blog/

Sorry :(

Erin said...

Well, as a school social worker I oversaw our Bigs in Schools matches. Personally, I found the community matches to be much more effective. You have more contact & fewer constraints on time and activities.

A. said...

I sent my info to Big Brothers Big Sisters of D.C. in February 2008... and never heard anything back! So, I started volunteering with another D.C. nonprofit as a mentor/tutor. That only lasted one semester, as the org lost their funding and had to shut their doors. To be honest, I didn't have the best experience, as my student was a teenager and she was more difficult than the younger kids, who were very excited to be there and very eager to learn. If I did it again, I think I'd opt to work with an elementary school aged kid...

amanda said...

Hi! I just found your blog through Brown Eyed Girl. Too cute. I love your wedding shots! I grew up in Indiana and my family still lives there.