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. 


Chris Anderson Announces Candidacy For Re-Election

Councilman Chris Anderson announced on Saturday that he is officially a candidate for reelection.   He said, “I ran for election four years ago to improve the conditions in District 7. We have made great strides and progress but there is still much work to do. Now is the time to continue moving forward, not backward to failed leadership and old policies that didn’t work. ... (click for more)

Vance Road Resurfacing Project Lane Closures Announced

CDOT announces intermittent lane closures on Vance Road between Airport Road and Lee Highway for resurfacing. Work will start on Monday and continue until Saturday, Dec. 17. Traffic control devices will be in place to direct traffic, but motorists should expect delays during these times.  In order to view a map of these closures, click here . (click for more)

Tennessee Members Of Congress Urge President To Approve Federal Disaster Assistance For Tennessee Counties

Members of Tennessee’s Congressional delegation on Saturday urged President Obama to quickly approve Governor Haslam’s request for a major disaster declaration for the State of Tennessee to help five Tennessee counties impacted by wildfires and severe weather in November rebuild and recover. “Governor Bill Haslam has submitted a request for Public Assistance and Individual ... (click for more)

Grohn Says Integrity And Ethics Lacking In Berke Administration

Mayoral candidate Larry Grohn criticized controversies and instability coming from the mayor’s administration as a sign of unethical leadership and a lack of integrity. He said, "These scandals lay out the simple fact that it is time for new leadership which is accountable to the people." Councilman Grohn’s criticism comes after the independent auditor’s release of a memorandum ... (click for more)

New School Funding Ideas

After reading the article “County Schools Prepare To Set Priorities For Next Round Of School Building Funding,” I could not help but think about how helpful it would be to have the millions of taxpayer dollars given the owners of Walnut Common apartments to build some new schools.   In case you did not know, since 2008 our elected officials have given away millions in taxpayer ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Facebook Starlet

The Pants Store, a toney women’s boutique in Birmingham’s Mountain Book community, held its annual Holiday Open House about a week or so and, as usual, the popular store was full of customers and holiday cheer. It was a festive gathering, fun for all, but as store employees cleaned up for the next day, they happened across an empty designer-shoe box and a brassiere somebody had ... (click for more)