Anonymous donor helps save Big Brothers Big Sisters program

CHARLESTON, SC – An anonymous local donor’s significant contribution will allow Big Brothers Big Sisters of Carolina Youth Development Center to keep its doors open.

The donation addresses the budget shortfall that prompted the CYDC Board of Directors’ decision last week to close the community-based mentoring program effective August 7.

“The CYDC board has graciously accepted this generous financial investment in the future of children in the Lowcountry,” said CEO of CYDC, Barbara Kelley-Duncan.

“We are so pleased and grateful to be able to continue providing these much-needed services to families and their children. It was our hope that a donor would come forward and help save this critical program, which is the only one of its kind in the tri-county area.”

All current staff will be retained, and Big Brothers Big Sisters will be able to continue offering vital support services to all 114 of its existing matches and to accept new matches.

“While this generous offer allows us to continue the program for the immediate future, we need the support of the community as we develop a long-term funding plan to ensure the long-term sustainability of this valuable community program,” said David Santos, Chair of the CYDC Board of Directors.

Independent research shows that the one-to-one professionally guided mentoring model used by Big Brothers Big Sisters is an effective one that makes a positive impact on the lives of youth.

A study found that after 18 months of spending time with their Bigs, compared to children not in the program, Littles are 46 percent less likely to begin using illegal drugs, 52 percent are less likely to skip school, and are more confident of their performance in their schoolwork.

“I am so thankful for the outpouring of community support not only financially but also with all of those who invest their time in helping all of our Littles,” said Big Brothers Big Sisters program director, Qaitlin Peterson.

“Because of the community’s generosity, we can continue making matches and watching the growth and success of the youth we serve.”

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