Mentoring program

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

He wasn't the favorite going into the race, but by the end of the day I'll Have Another was the winner of Saturday's Kentucky Derby.

The derby is a popular event that many around the country go all out for. It's no exception locally as Big Brothers Big Sisters of Eastern Missouri held a derby party Saturday.

The women were styled in their favorite hats, while the men donned their seersucker suits. But the party was more than just a venue to watch the race and dress up. These folks were raising money for a quality organization that's making a difference in the lives of many area children.

In this region 350 participants -- known as "Littles" -- benefit from the mentoring of an adult through Big Brothers Big Sisters. Among these young people, 176 participate in the ABC Today! initiative. This is a collaborative effort involving adult mentors, teachers, parents and organization staff using motivational strategies to help improve the students' grades, behavior and school attendance. As reported in Sunday's Southeast Missourian, the initiative is nearly meeting, and in come cases surpassing, its goals for this year.

Hats off to the organization for the positive impact it is having. With the continued financial support and volunteer efforts of many in this community, Big Brothers Big Sisters is poised to 'Have Another' great year.

To see a photo gallery from Saturday's derby party, go to semissourian.com.

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