Organization Assists At Risk Children in Community Through Student Volunteers

HSU students volunteer to help children facing adversity.


Big Bothers Big Sisters of Abilene is a branch of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America that strives to provide every child in Abilene with the opportunity to succeed and thrive in life.  The organization works to pair children facing adversity with adult mentors who can shape their lives for the better.  Citizens of Abilene have a wonderful opportunity to become a volunteer for Big Brothers Big Sisters and make a positive difference in a child’s life.

Many students at Hardin-Simmons University are already involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters.  However, with 108 kids currently on the waiting list, the organization is always looking for new volunteers to grow their program.“Being a Big has helped me to become accountable and learn valuable time-management skills,” Emily Fitzhugh, Hardin-Simmons student and Big Sister, said. “I look forward to meeting with my little every week, and I know how important it is to her that I come see her.  We have so much fun together.”

For those wanting to get involved with the organization, there are two types of programs to choose from.  The first option is the Lunch Buddies Program. As a Big, one would meet with his or her Little about once a week but at least twice a month at the Little’s school during lunch time.  This program is highly recommended for college students because it requires only a small time commitment but still creates a huge impact for both Bigs and Littles.

The second option for volunteers is the community-based program.  This program requires a time commitment of two to four times per month.  As a Big, one goes to his or her Little’s home and picks them up for a few hours to do various activities throughout the community such as going to the YMCA or seeing a movie.

Both programs are great options for anyone who is serious about volunteering for Big Brothers Big Sisters and making a difference for a child as a mentor. 

“Being a Big Brother or Big Sister simply means being a friend and a good listener. It means that you’re helping an Abilene child create a future story full of hope and enthusiasm,” said Jamie Bearden, Big Brothers Big Sisters Public Relations Director and Big Sister.

The organization is a Hardin-Simmons University approved volunteer partner, so students can receive hour-for-hour chapel credit for their participation.  Anyone interested in volunteering can contact Jamie Bearden at 325-674-3113 or or visit the organization’s website at 


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