Nearly 150 Children Waiting To Be Matched With Big Brother, Big Sister

Friday, March 14, 2014 - by Hollie Webb

Big Brothers Big Sisters Marketing Coordinator Ansley Kellerman told members of the Chattanooga Civitan Club on Friday afternoon that the organization has provided mentors to over 250 children in the area.

The organization has both community and school based programs. Volunteers who participate in the community program spend four to six hours with their "little" every month for at least a year.

Ms. Kellerman said, "We ask all of our volunteers for a year commitment because a lot of these kids have already been disappointed in their lives and we don't need them to be disappointed again.

"

For the school program, volunteers mentor children in an after school setting. Teachers recommend students who they believe would benefit from the program to get involved.

Currently, Ms. Kellerman said there are still nearly 150 children who are waiting to be matched with a Big Brother or Big Sister.

Big Brothers Big Sisters also markets itself to families with an incarcerated parent through its Amachi program, which receives state funding. The organization works to provide children of current inmates with a positive influence.

Ms. Kellerman said, "We're not trying to replace that parent, we're just trying to add to that child's life."

Right now, 70 percent of children with an incarcerated parent will also end up in jail themselves. Big Brothers Big Sisters seeks to change that.

Researchers have found that children who spent time with a Big Brother or Big Sister for 18 months were 46 percent less likely to use illegal drugs and 33 percent less likely to engage in violent behavior.

Other studies found that involvement in the program substantially improved performance in school. 


“Hands Across The Border” DUI Enforcement Campaign Begins Monday

Law enforcement officers in Georgia and five neighboring states will have zero tolerance for impaired drivers during the 25th annual “Hands Across the Border” enforcement campaign that will be held leading up to the long holiday weekend. Impaired drivers will be taken to jail during the week long enforcement campaign in Georgia, Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina ... (click for more)

Sam Houston Statute Unveiled, Dedicated At Cherokee Removal Memorial

Most people know about Sam Houston's accomplishments in Texas, but many history buffs will tell you Mr. Houston's legacy didn't start there.  "There would not have been a Texas as we know it without the Tennesseans," says Troy Wayne Poteete, chief justice of the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court and executive director of the National Trail of Tears Association, who said Mr. ... (click for more)

State Board In Nashville Approves New Erlanger Behavioral Health Hospital

Members of the board of the Tennessee Health Services and Development Agency in Nashville on Wednesday unanimously approved a new $25 million Behavioral Health Hospital planned by Erlanger Health Systems on Holzclaw Avenue.   Parkridge Valley Hospital and CADAS had opposed the issuance of Certificate of Need.  The 88-bed facility will provide "acute adult inpatient ... (click for more)

TDEC Defends Its Operation Of Septic Permit Office In Bradley County; Backs Hank Thompson

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) defended the operation of its septic permit office in Bradley County, including the work of manager Hank Thompson. The Bradley County Commission is studying whether to take over the operation of the office, saying there have been a number of complaints against Mr. Thompson and that he recently kicked Commissioner ... (click for more)

Downtown Needs Cleaned Up

My son and I parked on Broad Street and walked to the Billiard Club on Cherry Street this past weekend. It's probably a total of two blocks. In that short walk we passed where Rone Regency used to be on 6th Street and in that doorway was about a years worth of human feces and urine covering the doors and walls. The concrete sidewalk on the street is all broken up and the metal ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: 40 Questions About ‘Blue Bags’

No. 1 – Did you know that one in every five of the 42,000 children in the Hamilton County school district is what the experts call “food deprived?” No. 2 – Can you get your arms around the fact that a huge percentage of those 8,400 children get little, if nothing, to eat from Friday at lunch until they return to our schools on Monday? No. 3 -- Did you know that you – just ... (click for more)