Big Brother Big Sisters Celebrates National Mentoring Month with Local Events

January 9, 2017

Atlanta, GA – January is National Mentoring Month, and this year Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta (BBBSMA) is celebrating with local activities. BBBMSA has been providing mentoring programs to the community since 1960.

“Mentoring is a critical part of developing positive relationships within our community – mentoring is proven to have a positive effect on academic, social, and economic outcomes for our young people,” said Janice McKenzie-Crayton, President and CEO. “This year our programming for National Mentoring Month includes hosting a symposium with national and local experts in mentoring, research and partnership.”

Local programming that is open to the press includes:

  • “Innovations in Mentoring Symposium,” in partnership with the Georgia Tech with the Georgia Tech School of Public Policy, will host a roundtable symposium entitled Innovations in Mentoring: Game Changers for Changing Lives this Friday, January 13. This dynamic conversation will explore how the private, public and non-profit sectors are working together to innovate, to improve and to ensure positive futures for children and youth.
  • Big Appreciation Night on Thursday, January 26 from 6:00-9:00 p.m. This event will recognize the many contributions of our dedicated Big Brothers and Big Sisters, and includes the announcement of our Big Brother and Big Sister of the Year for 2017!

Research shows that mentors can play a powerful role in providing young people with the tools to make responsible choices, attend and engage in school, and reduce or avoid risky behavior like drug use. In turn, these young people are:

  • 55% more likely to be enrolled in college
  • 81% more likely to report participating regularly in sports or extracurricular activities.
  • 78% more likely to volunteer regularly in their communities.
  • More than twice as likely to say they held a leadership position in a club or sports team.

Yet, the same research shows that 9 million young people in our country will grow up without a mentor. Metro Atlanta has an immense need for mentors, especially for young boys. Currently, over 400 young men in the twelve counties we serve are on the waiting list for a male mentor.

National Mentoring Month each January allows for unique engagement from community members interested in becoming a mentor. This year, with the support of the mentoring community, we are encouraging the public to go beyond just digital engagement – and become involved in making a real life impact. Mentoring relationships are at their best when connections are made between a caring adult and a young person who knows that someone is there to help guide them through those real life decisions.

Other important dates for this public awareness campaign that activate on social media include:

  • January 12, 2017: “I Am a Mentor Day,” a day for volunteer mentors to celebrate their role and reflect on the ways mentees have enhanced their world and share their stories about being a mentor on social media using #MentorIRL.
  • January 16, 2017: Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, a day to share in the inspirational words of MLK, Jr. and elevate the spirit of service through volunteerism.
  • January 17, 2017: International Mentoring Day, a day of international conversations on social media where photos, video and messages to share powerful mentoring stories.
  • January 19, 2017: “Thank Your Mentor Day,” a day for all who have real life mentoring experiences to thank those who helped them on their path to adulthood and beyond when we encourage anyone who has had a mentor to say thank you by sending a note, a card or sharing a story on social media using #MentorIRL.

National Mentoring Month is led by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, with support from the Highland Street Foundation. Each year since its launch in 2002, National Mentoring Month has enjoyed the strong support of the President and the United States Congress. Other prominent individuals who have participated in the campaign include: Maya Angelou, former President Bill Clinton, Clint Eastwood, Quincy Jones, Cal Ripken Jr., Bill Russell and Usher.

To learn more about the role mentoring plays in our community and to find volunteer opportunities visit or call (404) 601-7000.


About Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta

For 55 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta (BBBSMA) has transformed the lives of some of the most vulnerable children in our community through a proven youth development strategy: one-to-one mentoring. The mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever. The agency serves approximately 2,500 children from 12 metro Atlanta counties on an annual basis.

EIN number: 58-0861895

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.