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May/June 2013

Celebrating 25 Amazing Years! Celebrating a 25th year anniversary of any kind is incredibly special and worth a few moments of reflection! This particular anniversary is no exception. As I look back on my 25 years with Big Brothers Big Sisters I am filled with gratitude for having the privilege of working with so many amazing children, parents, volunteers and colleagues.

What’s Inside Big Breakfast 2013 Update…with photos! Thanks to our event sponsors:

I was first introduced to BBBS as a mentor in college when I became a Big Sister to Julia. Although we are no longer connected, I keep her picture on my office bulletin board to remind me of how it all started. Many people ask me what has kept me at BBBS for such a long time. The answer is very simple - the mission! Working at BBBS has afforded me the opportunity to watch, time and time again, the magical transformation that a simple friendship has on the life of a hopeful child. All the inherent good in decent people is channeled in a way that fosters significant differences that enhance lives forever. Our volunteers and program team are generous, caring and committed individuals. I am honored to lead the Program Department in our tireless quest to forward our mission. For me, no other “job” could have been this rewarding - no other job would still find me brainstorming in the wee hours of the night about how to get more volunteers for our Littles. And to that end, I ask for your sincere help! Our goal this year is to serve 1,850 youth by June 30, 2013. We are very close but need volunteer referrals! Please invite all you know to consider becoming a Big Brother or Big Sister - like me, you’ll look back on your experience with wonder and awe at how fast the time went and how marvelous the journey was! Sincerely, Susan Wiltfong/Vice President of Program

MATCH Numbers… Current Active Matches: Community based: 930 Site based: 289 Total: 1219 Total Youth Served FYTD: 1760 Average Match Length: Community based: 22 months Site based: 15 months

Big Breakfast 2013 The Arizona Biltmore proved to be a magical place April 18, 2013 as more than 350 attendees laughed and cried as some very touching moments were shared during our BIG BREAKFAST fundraiser. With the help of 37 table captains and the generosity of those in attendance, we raised nearly $70,000! That’s enough to support 58 matches in 2013! A special thanks to our table captains, staff, board members, Bigs and Littles and friends of the organization who spent countless hours supporting this event. Special thanks Event Chairs, April Lane and Mayor Greg Stanton, Board Member Damon Gross, and emcee Paul Horton- We couldn't have done this without you!

Little Sister Catrina (with name tag) and BS Julie with her husband and daughter. Thanks for sharing your story of perseverance and love! Best wishes always! If you haven’t yet donated - it’s not too late! Contac t Leslie Zschokke at

Match Spotlight: Big Sister Kathy and Little Sister Astrid

1. What is your little's name & how long have you been matched? Astrid. We have been matched since January

2012. 2. Why did you want to become a Big? I moved from Pittsburgh and away from my granddaughters. I was really

missing them so decided that becoming a BS would be a great solution. 3. Tell us about one of your favorite experiences as a Big: We recently went to Castles and Coasters. It was a fantastic day. I pretty much let her decide what to do and what to ride. We started with the go-carts which I ran into the wall on the first turn. We both laughed. Then we went to the bumper boats. She wanted to drive and we just kept spinning in circles. I didn’t do much better. We played air hockey and she beat me. I didn’t LET her win either!!! Then she talked me into zip lining. We asked the attendant if anyone ever got stuck and just as we asked, someone did. They had to throw a hook to try to get him back and it took about 10 tries. Astrid decided that I could go first. I was pretty scared but I figured if she could do it, so could I! It was such a fun day for both of us. I’m not sure who enjoyed it more! 4. Why is mentoring important to you? Astrid has 4 brothers. She told me that she wanted to be in the program

because she wanted a sister. I am trying to be that positive figure in her life and hoping that as years go by she develops a trust with me that I can help her through any situation that arises.


Grants Update Grants received from Jan 2013 to April 2013

APS AVNET City of Phoenix C.R. Bard John F. Long Foundation Lockheed Martin Season for Sharing Wal-Mart

Thank you to our dedicated Board of Directors.

Bill Ross, Chairman Robert Mroz, Treasurer Roger Morris, Secretary Tom Ambrose Carolyn Andrews Gina Barriga Jon Bohnert Swift Burch III Cathy Chess Damon Gross Robin Hanna

Thank You!

Michelle Hernandez Paul Horton Dave Howell Tom Irvine


Michael Kearney April Lane

Q: Social media is a great way for me to keep in touch with friends and

Carlene Lowry

family. Is it appropriate for me to communicate with my Little through social media outlets?

George H. McNamara Ted Meyer

A: We recognize online social networking has become a very popular communications tool. In general, personal use of social networking sites is typically for communication between peers, including friends and family. BBBS wants to reiterate that your relationship with your Little is that of a mentor, in addition to being a friend. Not all social networking sites are designed to support mentoring relationships. As a reminder, should you choose to use social media with your Little after getting permission from their parent or guardian and the Program Specialist, please be mindful of your use. Do not post photos of your Little without permission from the parent/guardian, do not disclose any information about your Little on your page and ensure that all content on your page is child friendly. You are a role model at all times to your Little. Brought to you by Terri Waibel, MSW/Training & Child Safety Specialist

Chuck Miller Chris Montgomery Rob Polston Maryann Richardson Smokey Rivers Rachel Robertson Jessica Taylor Dick Todd Dean Wegner Dr. Christine Wilkinson

Match Bowl For Kids! REGISTER NOW!!! Bowl For Kids’ Sake (BFKS) is the largest annual fundraising campaign for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona. Each year over 1,500 bowlers representing more than 20 companies and organizations come together to sport wicked bowling shoes, have a million laughs and raise funds to help support the children in our community. In return, BBBSAZ provides all participants with a bowling party to include: two hours of bowling, shoe rental, food, raffle prizes, t-shirts, and more! This year, the Young Professionals Council INVITES each and every match to join them for a special afternoon of bowling!!

WHEN: JUNE 22 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM Register today to get your fundraising campaign started early! A minimum of $100 per person is required to participate. Go to and select ‘Start a Team’, select “My team is bowling with a group’ and then select ‘MATCH Bowl hosted by the YPC - Sat., June 22nd’. Continue through the registration process. NOTE: you will need to set-up a separate page for your Little under your team. You can then add additional members to your team (up to 5) or your team can consist of just you and your Little and we will pair you with another match the day of the event. Please contact Jessica Whitney, Events Manager with questions at

The Young Professionals Council of Big Brothers Big Sisters is currently looking for new members. If you are interested in helping create Match events, working with the agency on fundraising events and more, please contact Teresa Fautch at

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Thanks to US Airways! We recently received $5,000 to support US Airways employees who volunteer as mentors with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona. Currently, we have seven US Airways employees who participate as “Bigs”. We also received $5,000 in US Airways gift cards which will help send staff and Board members to attend our upcoming national conference in June and for fundraising purposes. We appreciate the generous contribution!

Hispanic Mentoring RECHARGES! Many of the youth enrolled in our program are of Hispanic /Latino descent. We strive to match these youth with mentors of the same ethnicity who can enrich their lives culturally, socially and academically. The kids in our program are between the ages of 6 – 18. While their backgrounds are diverse, they all have one thing in common: the desire to have someone in their lives that can be a friend, and that they can count on. Being a Big Brother or Big Sister means building a friendship, sharing your experiences, and helping someone develop to their full potential, all while doing things that you both like to do. There’s no better time to Start Something in your community and help put a child on the right track. Get started today! Please contact Community Relations Specialist, Cameron Plese at 602.799.0512 or email

JCP CARES! June is the perfect month to shop your local jcpenney store while helping BBBS at the same time! During that time, jcpenney customers will be asked to round up purchases to the nearest dollar with each donation going to BBBS. In addition, jcpenney will donate $1 for every $50 gift card sold during the month, giving Big Brothers Big Sisters an opportunity to receive an additional $50K. Haggar will also run an in-store campaign in all jcpenney locations during the month of June. For any pair of Haggar pants purchased, Haggar will donate $1 to BBBS with a maximum contribution of $50,000.

Thanks to The Phoenix Zoo for hosting an amazing Match Picnic on March 30th. The day started with a delicious lunch provided by Port of Subs and Dasani water. Matches got messy painting banners for the Big Breakfast (thanks to our little artists) before taking off with new found friends to explore the wonders of the zoo! Can’t wait until next year!

Big Update May/June  
Big Update May/June  

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona quarterly newsletter