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 BBBS of Northeast Iowa Best in Country!

Local Leaders Help Create Life-Changing Mentoring Relationships for Children

(Waterloo, IA) – For the second year in a row, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America has selected Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Iowa as one of the country’s top-performing mentoring programs by awarding the agency 2016 Agency of the Year. The local agency has demonstrated remarkable leadership, fundraising abilities, and significantly grew the number of children served in our community. The agency received this top honor at the 2017 Big Brothers Big Sisters National Conference in San Diego in June.

“We are proud of all of our more than 300 affiliates across the country, but the Northeast Iowa agency staff and Board of Directors have truly shown extraordinary leadership, innovation, and commitment,” said Pam Iorio, President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. “This agency is making a difference in the lives of hundreds of children each year.”

The local agency, which serves youth in Black Hawk, Bremer, Butler, Fayette, Floyd and Buchanan Counties, is focused on growing the number and maintaining the quality of mentoring relationships (“matches”) between caring adult volunteers (“Bigs”) and youth (“Littles”). In the past 24 months the agency’s program capacity has grown by 128% to meet the needs of youth growing up without a caring, consistent adult in their life in Northeast Iowa.

In 2016-17, after one year of being matched one-to-one with a Big, Littles enrolled in the local program showed the following impact:

·        99% avoided the judicial system from the time they began meeting with their Big

92% believe they can and will graduate high school

78% who did not believe they would attend or graduate college before meeting their Big now believe they can and will

77% who had difficulties forming healthy relationships before meeting their Big have improved their relationships at home or at school

72% who struggled with social acceptance before meeting their Big now feel more socially accepted

76% improved their scholastic confidence

73% improved their grades

84% who had issues with school attendance before meeting their Bigs have improved their attendance

“This recognition is a true testament to the tremendous support our agency has from our community,” said Katie Orlando, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Iowa. “Without the support of our staff, Board of Directors, donors, program champions and especially our Bigs, Littles and families, we would not be able to expand our program in a meaningful and sustainable way to reach the struggling youth that need us in Northeast Iowa.”

This award comes at the heels of the local agency also winning the 2017 Give Back Iowa Volunteer Challenge as well as another national designation from Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, Pinnacle Agency, for offering one of the highest quality mentoring programs in the nation. The local agency also was selected as National Board of the Year last summer.

About Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Iowa

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Iowa provides children facing adversity with strong, enduring, professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships that change their lives for the better, forever. Big Brothers Big Sisters ensures that the children in its program achieve measurable outcomes, including educational success, avoidance of risky behaviors, higher aspirations, greater confidence, and better relationships. This mission has been the cornerstone of the organization’s 54-year history.
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© 2011 Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Iowa, 2530 University Avenue, Waterloo, Iowa 50701, 319-235-9397