HOW IT WORKS
Sign up for an orientation below to learn more about the commitment.
Volunteers will receive an application to complete and return to our enrollment team prior to their interview.
An in-person interview allows us to make thoughtful matches based on factors like personality, interests, schedule and geography.
After being accepted into the program and matched, volunteers will meet their new Little and the child’s family for the first time at our office.
Frequently Asked Questions
When can I see my Little?
As a match, you decide together what you want to do with your Little’s parental approval. We recommend that you keep a consistent schedule of outings and see each together on a regular basis. Your case manager can provide more guidance on this after you’re matched.
How much money should I spend?
The quality of time invested with your Little is more important than the amount of money you spend. That’s why we don’t encourage spending a lot of money on your outings. The goal of the relationship is to help them see the world through a different lens. If you are going to spend money, we encourage you to seek out low-cost activities, especially in the beginning. Shoot hoops at a local park, play a game together, or share that pizza that you were going to have for lunch anyway. Big Brothers Big Sisters also offers group activities throughout the year that are a great way to meet other matches. A e-newsletter on the first Thursday of every month from our community engagement coordinator will have match event opportunities and discounts for matches.
What are some good ideas for outings with my Little Brother?
Share an activity that gives you something in common to talk about. Buy a comic book to read together. Play a board game. Hit a bucket of golf balls at the local driving range. Take a ride in the car with the radio on and talk about the music you like. In addition, the agency hosts over 60 events annually that are free to attend and include everything from kayaking and kickboxing to beach days. You want to select activities that give each of you a chance to learn more about one another. For children, playing can be learning. Most important: Keep it simple and enjoy yourselves!
Can I bring my spouse, a friend or family member on outings?
In the beginning, it’s important for you and your Little to get to know each other. This can happen best on a one-to-one basis. However, over time it’s also valuable for your Little to get to know the people who are important to you. Just keep in mind that if you’re spending lots of time with others, your Little may begin to feel jealous or neglected. The main focus is the friendship you develop with your Little and the impact you have on their life.
If you are interested in volunteering with your significant other, we offer a Big Couple program that matches two volunteers to one child. Learn more by clicking here.
What kind of support can I expect from Big Brothers Big Sisters once I get matched?
Once you are matched with your Little, a match support specialist from the agency will be in regular contact with you to provide assistance and give feedback. Any time you are unsure about what to do or how to handle a situation, you’re invited to call, text or email your match support specialist for help. They’ll help you with ideas for activities, provide guidance for handling possible difficult situations and give feedback on how you are making a difference.
I don't live in Orange County, but I work here and/or spend a significant amount of time in the area. Am I still eligible to volunteer?
We encourage you to apply if you are willing to be in Orange County twice a month to pick up and drop off your Little for outings. Our enrollment team will be happy to evaluate your situation on a case-by-case basis.
I have additional questions. Who can I contact?
For additional questions about the program, eligibility and getting started, please contact Volunteer Relations Specialist Tarah Morton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
+ Adults age 18 and over
+ Must pass a background check
+ Have a valid CA drivers license and auto insurance
+ Commit to at least one year in the program
SIGN UP FOR ORIENTATION
Orientation sessions last for one hour. If you are unavailable on the dates offered below, please schedule a 15-minute phone orientation with volunteer relations specialist Tarah Morton by clicking here.