About Us

We are here to start something

Big Brothers Big Sisters is not your typical organization. We help children realize their potential and build their futures. We nurture children and strengthen communities. And we couldn’t do any of it without you.

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Changing perspectives. Changing lives.
For more than 100 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America has operated under the belief that inherent in every child is the ability to succeed and thrive in life. As the nation’s largest donor and volunteer supported mentoring network, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America makes meaningful, monitored matches between adult volunteers (“Bigs”) and children (“Littles”), ages 5 through 18. We develop positive relationships that have a direct and lasting effect on the lives of young people.

Mid-Illinois Big Brothers Big Sisters began services in January, 1975. The agency was incorporated in May, 1974, as Big Brothers of Charleston-Mattoon. Services to girls were added in 1976 and the agency name was changed again to reflect county-wide services to Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Coles County. When services to Shelby County were initiated, the name was changed to Mid-Illinois Big Brothers Big Sisters. In 2009, services to Effingham County began.

Vision: The Mid-Illinois Big Brothers Big Sisters Vision is that all children achieve success in life.

Mission: The Mid-Illinois Big Brothers Big Sisters Mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported 1-to-1 relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.

Accountability: The 2013 Big Brothers Big Sisters Youth Outcomes Survey report reflects across-the-board gains for youth a year after being in a one-to-one mentoring relationship, compared to their peers who do not have mentors. Middle-school aged mentees outperformed their unmatched counterparts in every area measured.

Research Suggests Mentoring has a Positive Effect on the Whole Child
The Youth Outcomes Survey (YOS) assesses youth before they enroll in Big Brothers Big Sisters and a year later –12 months for mentees in community-based and a school year for youth who are matched with school-based mentors. Like the first YOS data issued last year, the latest report (reflecting information gathered between 2010 and 2012 ) supports long-standing independent research that finds youth enrolled in Big Brothers Big Sisters improve in school and in relationships with their peers and parents. Click here to view our National Office’s Report to America, the 2013 Youth Outcomes Report.

For youth enrolled in big Brothers Big Sisters’ community-based, one-to-one mentoring program:

  • 94 percent maintained or improved in their attitudes towards risky behaviors
  • 88 percent maintained or improved in parental trust
  • 85 percent maintained or improved in their educational expectation
  • 83 percent maintained or improved in scholastic competence and
  • 83 percent maintained or improved in social acceptance.

For Big Brothers Big Sisters’ school-based mentees:

  • 90 percent maintained or improved in social acceptance
  • 90 percent maintained or improved in their attitudes towards risky behaviors
  • 87 percent maintained or improved in their educational expectations
  • 86 percent maintained or improved in parental trust and
  • 84 percent maintained or improved in their grades.

“This new research shows that by engaging communities, schools and families, Big Brothers Big Sisters helps youth achieve positive outcomes in a broad range of areas that experts say really matter,” said Big Brothers Big Sisters of America President and CEO Charles Pierson. “While programs that focus on education, behavior and socio-emotional growth exclusively are extremely important, this report supports our focus on developing the whole child. We are heartened by the results we are seeing for youth during their middle school years, a time when attitudes towards risk and school can shape the future.”

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