For the third consecutive year, Chopper Trading has partnered with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Chicago to provide one-on-one mentors for children ages six through 18. The mission of BBBS is, through a network of mentor volunteers, to provide high impact mentoring that enables lifelong success. The relationships that are created between the mentors (“Bigs”) and the children (“Littles”) are tremendous and truly help inspire the children to realize that they each possess unlimited potential, and a bright and positive future.
This month, Chopper accompanied a dozen children from Suder Elementary School, to the University of Illinois-Chicago (UIC) Special Recreation Facility. The Chopper ”Bigs” and their “Littles” participated in UIC’s Team Challenge Program, which included activities focused on teamwork, cooperation and building trust amongst the members of the group. Like all of our previous outings with BBBS, this was a memorable day for all of us at Chopper and we hope that our time with the children has instilled in them the confidence to unlock their potential.
These relationships, built on trust and friendship, significantly impact the lives of these children. In fact, Public/Private Ventures – an independent Philadelphia-based national research organization – conducted a study of nearly one thousand boys and girls from eight Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies across the country. The researchers found that after 18 months of spending time with their “Bigs”, the ”Littles”, compared to those children not in the program, were:
- 46% less likely to begin using illegal drugs
- 27% less likely to begin using alcohol
- 52% less likely to skip school
- 37% less likely to skip a class
- 33% less likely to hit someone
They also found that the “Littles” were more confident about their performance in school and got along better with their families.