By Chris Kieffer
TUPELO – A group that pairs children and mentors hosts its lone annual fundraiser this month.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Mississippi will hold “Bowl for Kids’ Sake” on April 20 at Tupelo’s RebeLanes. Participating teams will bowl a game beginning at either 4:30, 5:30 or 6:30 p.m.
“It is fun, and it helps us be able to serve the children in our community,” said Angie Owen, program coordinator for Big Brothers Big Sisters. “We have really changed a lot of lives in the area. Children who have needed help over the years have gotten help because we are here.”
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Mississippi serves about 200 children at a time in Lee and Itawamba Counties. They range in age from kindergartners to high school seniors.
It offers two different programs. In one, adults or high school students visit with younger children at school or at an after-school program and work one-on-one with those children.
In the community program, adult mentors, or “Bigs,” meet regularly with their “Little” in a variety of settings. The two spend time together, as the Bigs bring the Littles to various events, activities or functions. They may have meals, shop or go to a movie, for instance.
“I think it provides hope for children who may have lost a little hope for one reason or another,” Owen said. “It is providing additional adult friendship and encouragement.”
The bowling fundraiser will feature five-person teams. Each competitor is encouraged to raise at least $100, and those who do so will get a T-shirt. The minimum requirement is $20 per person.
The organization also seeks corporate donations, beginning at $1,000. To sign up, visit the event’s website, bfks2015.kintera.org/Northeast.
For more information contact Owen at (662) 687-1299 or Itawamba County program coordinator Makalia Zinn at (662) 687-1532.