At Big Brothers Big Sisters, we believe every child should have the opportunity to reach his or her full potential – both as individuals and citizens. We believe that by changing the course of young lives we can in turn be changing the course of a community’s future.
Start Talking is a place where we want to raise awareness of key issues that face today’s youth. We will sometimes advocate, sometimes educate, sometimes inform, sometimes ask questions and always invite discussion about the pressing concerns that involve the younger generations of today.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Part of the Family

I almost can’t believe it, but this year marks the five year anniversary of my match with my little sister. We were matched only a few months before I moved out of the town where we both grew up, to a new city for work. But we were ready and excited to take on the exciting challenges of being long distance (only one hour away).

The time has passed so quickly, and we have created so many wonderful memories. We’ve been to each other’s graduations, holidays, birthdays and family gatherings. It’s been an honour to watch her grow, navigate high school, study hard, and offer some advice and an ear along the way.

People I know who have been part of the Big Brothers Big Sisters family in the past had told me that this would be a life-changing undertaking. I still can’t believe just how right they were. I feel honoured to have someone want to share their struggles with me, their happy moments, and their thoughts.

Our match ended almost two years ago because my sister turned 16, but we have continued our relationship without blinking an eye. We will be friends forever, family for life, and have a network to proudly call ourselves alumni of: Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Happy Family Day, from our family to yours!

Katie, Former Big Sister and Alumni

Monday, February 9, 2015

The Power of Music

Everyone can think of a song or artist that has moved them. Music can be powerful, it can speak to us, calm us when stressed and lift us up when we’re having a tough day. We often take it for granted, having it play in the background without even realizing the impact it is having, but no one can deny that when we really listen, it can be transformative.

Little Sister Amaiyah shares the impact music has had in her life:

Music builds my confidence. Music is a part of my everyday life, it inspires me to be better.

  1. Off stage I am shy and often lack confidence. However when I am on stage singing I feel joyful and confident. The stage feels like home.
  2. I listen to music every day. Music helps me start and end my day with a smile. It helps me to focus, be more energized and positive. That is why I decided to learn how to play the piano. My music lessons have taught me how to concentrate and express myself through my music.
  3. Music has helped me to do things I didn't think I could do. I've danced in front of 440 people and I was able to do that because of the music. We danced to my favorite song and I felt energized and good about myself. I've sang at various functions such as concerts and family gatherings. This would not have been possible without the joy of music giving me a voice.
Those are just a few ways that music builds my confidence and inspires me to be a better, person. Music plays a big part in my life and it will always today tomorrow and forever.

Sincerely: Amaiyah, 12 you a music fan? Do you love to sing? If so, be sure to check out our Make a Note of Mentoring Contest for a chance at some great prizes while supporting a great cause!