Big Sisters, Big Impact

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Based right here in Fairview, Big Sisters of BC Lower Mainland connects girls to mentors in the community. Executive Director Chantelle Krish talks about the aim to ‘ignite’ the potential of youth through relationship building, and how you can get involved.

How does Big Sisters support girls and young women?

Chantelle: We have three main programs.

Our flagship program is 1-to-1 mentorship between women and girls aged 7-17. Many of our ‘mentees’ are facing adversity, such as challenges at home, bullying in school, or issues with mental health. Having an adult who is there for them on a consistent basis has so many positive influences on all aspects of their lives.

Our Study Buddy program is based around academic achievement, through helping with homework and school, and it builds relationships that can go on for years.

And Go Girls is our group mentoring program, based in schools, which focuses on positive body image and healthy eating.

Our programs are delivered by volunteers who receive all the training and case support they need to be great mentors.

What has changed over the last few years?

Chantelle: What we have seen over the last few years due to the pandemic is a greater need for mental health support, as well as a need for more support in schools. This has been exacerbated by isolation and a lack of in-school programing.

The Study Buddy program really benefited youth during this time, keeping our little sisters in touch with a role model who regularly checked in on them. We know the transition from youth to adolescence is when risky behaviours come into play, so it is an especially important time to have positive influences in one’s life.


What is coming up for Big Sisters?

Chantelle: We have a soiree in October, and also a mega bike event in Fall. It’s a big bike that fits around 25 people on it, and people can sponsor a seat to participate. It’s really appropriate for Fairview and fits with our value of active living.

We’re looking for organizations and teams to participate, so reach out to us – it is going to be a lot of fun!

How can people support Big Sisters?

Chantelle: It can be anything from having a sign out at their business about what we do, starting a donation collection, volunteering, or attending an event.

And we are always looking for ways to participate in community – things our ‘littles’ might not be able to participate in otherwise. That might be a trip to the aquarium or Science World, a day at the PNE, or going to a museum. If you have a way to connect our youth to experiences like these, please be in touch.

Learn more about Big Sisters of BC Lower Mainland by visiting