Apr 19, 2021
By Big Brothers Big Sisters of Atlantic and Cape May Counties
Happy Earth Month! The sun is shining (most days), the birds are chirping and the trees and gardens are all waking up. This is such a fun time of year, especially for the Bigs and Littles in our mentoring programs because it means they can get outside and enjoy some fresh air together!
It’s been a long and lonely winter, especially for our matches who have had to rely mostly on video calls and texts to keep in touch due to COVID-19 restrictions. Now that the weather is finally warming up, our matches are bursting with excitement to get outside and spend time together in person again, while still being safe with facemasks and lots of hand washing of course.
Each month we send out a newsletter to all our community-based mentoring matches and parents/guardians that is chock full of fun ideas they can do virtually and in person. We know after more than a year of living through the pandemic, it’s hard to think of new ways to have fun while staying healthy, so we do our best to put our heads together to keep the new ideas coming. This month’s newsletter focused mainly on Earth Day, which is fast approaching on April 22. Check out some of the crafts and activity ideas below that you can do with your own family!
Fun Ways to Celebrate Earth Day
- Do a beach cleanup! We all love going to the shore, so why not help keep it nice and clean! You’ll be providing a clean environment for your family to enjoy the beach as well as a nice clean home for the many sea creatures in the area. All you need to do is head to your favorite beach with bags for trash and recyclables and maybe some gloves just to be safe.
- Check out the NJ Department of Environmental Protection’s special Earth Day website! They have so many fun ideas for crafty projects that practice reuse, some coloring and activity books, and virtual tours of NJ’s state parks and historic sites. Learn more here: https://www.nj.gov/dep/dep50/activities.html
- Become a Backyard Naturalist! The NJ Department of Fish and Wildlife has created online resources for learning more about the environment. You might not have to go any farther than your own backyard to learn some new skills and identify some of the native species that live among us. Learn more here: https://www.nj.gov/dep/fgw/backyard_naturalist.htm
About our Mentoring Programs
Since 1965, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Atlantic and Cape May Counties has been changing children's lives by matching them with caring adults to mentor and guide them on a path to success.
We have two main types of mentoring programs:
- Community-based mentoring
- Matches get together one-on-one for just a few hours each month to do fun activities in the area, whether it’s going for a bike ride, taking a stroll on the boardwalk, or going fishing.
- Site-based mentoring
- School-based matches typically consist of high school students mentoring middle or elementary school students during supervised sessions that meet on-site at the school.
- Sports Buddies is a one-to-one mentoring program that connects mentors and children through sports and activities that support a healthy, active lifestyle. Sports Buddies meet twice a month for weekend activities that range from attending a professional or collegiate sporting event to hiking, bowling, and creating healthy snacks and meals.
Big Sister Alexa and Little Sister Heaven enjoy the beach in Cape May County
Get Involved with BBBS and Make a BIG Difference
It goes without saying that the pandemic has had a major impact on our programs and the children we serve in the community. We had to creatively pivot many times throughout this past year to ensure our Littles always felt connected and supported even in times of social distancing. We took immediate action to maintain and support the vital, life-changing mentoring relationships we facilitate and professionally support in order to fight social isolation of our young people and families. As our waiting list grows with new children seeking a mentor, so does our need for more volunteers. If you’re interested in learning more about becoming a Big, or would like to make a donation to help us create more matches for the many kids currently waiting for a Big, please click below.
Become a Big: https://bbbsa.force.com/bbbsforms/s/?type=big
Make a Donation: https://netdonor.net/page/23785/donate/1
Enroll a Child: http://www.bbbsatlanticcape.org/enroll-a-child/