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BBBSG News for Fall 2016

Local kids with big plans about one day becoming a pilot had those dreams become a reality on Saturday, Oct. 15th for the third annual COPA FLT 1 Flight Day, a unique experience offered by members of the Guelph-based division of Canadian Owners and Pilots Association (COPA). 
 Bigs and Littles enjoyed the opportunity to fly over the city in a number of unique small aircrafts that took off from the Guelph Airpark. The annual event, led by Michael Ghent, is one of the favourites on the annual calendar. 20-minute flights took place on a beautiful sunny day. With great visibility, the flying conditions were optimal for the 30+ bigs and littles who participated.

We would like to extend a big thank-you to Michael Ghent and all the pilots who donated their time and space in their aircrafts to BBBSG kids. This event is so greatly appreciated by all. We were also lucky to have GuelphToday.com cover this outing and take photographs. For more images of the day, make sure to check out their article online.

santasMake way for the Santas! Back for its second year, the increasingly popular Guelph Santa Parade Run will take place through downtown Guelph on Sunday, Nov. 20th. Participants dressed as Santa (suits are included in the registration fee) will walk or run 3km through the downtown core as a kickoff to the annual Guelph Community Santa Claus Parade.
Participants in the walk/run will follow the same route as the parade and will be cheered on loudly by onlookers. With more than 70 "Santas" participating in last year's inaugural event, we're hoping to increase the number of runners/walkers in year two. This exciting event is presented by Speed River Track & Field and the Downtown Guelph Business Association.
For more information or to register, visit www.guelphsantarun.ca. We Ho-Ho-Hope to see you there!
If you thought 2016 was a busy year at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Guelph, wait until you hear what's in store for 2017 too! Our team has been busy planning out next year's event calendar and we need your help as we continue to serve more than 640 local children, matching them with a role model, a mentor and a friend. 
Guelph_horizontal_2colourBBBSG events take place all year and we try to offer something for everyone. Add these dates to your calendar to keep track of everything we have in store. Of course, we couldn't run these exciting initiatives without the support of volunteers. If you, or someone you know, is interested in helping out on the day of an event, please email Mike Treadgold, Manager of Development & Communications or call (519) 824-5154, ex. 224. 
February 4, 2017 - Have a Heart for Kids' Sake Gala
March (date TBD) - Video Game On!
April 21-23 - Bowl for Kids' Sake: Celebrate Canada's 150th Birthday!
May 28 - Downtown Guelph's BIG Family Food Truck Picnic
June 20 - Golf Fore Kids' Sake
June 25 - The Big Little Run

August (all month) - Little Change for Big Change: Community Tag Days, Point-of-Sale donations and Local Restaurant Evenings
August (date TBD) - Guelph Minor Baseball Skills Challenge
September (all month) - Celebrate Big Brothers Big Sisters Month #MentoringMatters
November 19 - Downtown Guelph Santa Parade Run
December (all month) - 12 Days of Giving Virtual Silent Auction

We're also in the early planning stages of a Party Rockers Dance Party, Community Bingo Night(s) and a local Man Cave tour. Stay tuned for more information, including dates and locations. If you have any questions about the above events, or you'd like to assist with planning, we'd love to hear from you!

Dani Logos LOIf you were out and about in Guelph throughout the month of August, you may have seen many of our volunteers stationed outside local retailers, collecting donations in support of our newest campaign, A Little Change for Big Change (LCBC). Loose coin donations collected from all across the city on these "tag days" amounted to more than $10,000 in donations to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Guelph, and they provided a great opportunity for some of the kids in our program to support the agency's fundraising activities.


The campaign, led by Jennifer, our Development Co-ordinator, was multi-faceted, and also included point-of-sale donations inside local businesses, and special menu nights at favourite restaurants The Keg, Borealis and Montana's. The best part about Little Change for Big Change was that it offered something for everyone: our "littles" collected donations with their "bigs", our staff and board participated in the restaurant evenings, our various community partners who opened their doors to offer point-of-sale opportunities and our local school partners presented this donation opportunity to their students. No donation was too small, and the cumulative total from all LCBC donations amounted to more than $20,000.

We can't wait to bring Little Change for Big Change back to the community in 2017, offering donation opportunities in more retailers, more restaurants and via other creative means. If you work for/own a business who is interested in participating in this campaign next year, please contact Jennifer at our office - jennifer.tremaine@bigbrothersbigsisters.ca.

BrigittaOur BBBSG teams continues to get bigger and more talented! After successfully completing her student placement with us earlier this year, Brigitta Wideman is our new full-time Co-operative In-School Mentoring Co-ordinator. Brigitta's role has her supervising a number of local high school co-op students who lead mentoring programs for local elementary school-aged youth. Funding for this program has been provided by the Ontario Trillium Foundation. With educational experience from both the University of Guelph and Conestoga College, she brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our team and we're thrilled to have her with BBBSG on a full-time basis. 

RichJoining our board of directors is Richard Moccia, Associate Vice-President of Research (Strategic Partnerships) at the University of Guelph, where he is also a professor of animal and poultry science. Richard brings a great deal of managerial and volunteer experience to our board, and he is a dedicated community member in Guelph for more than 40 years. Like all of our generous and committed board members, Richard will be participating in one of our BBBSG event planning committees and we're lucky to have him assist with the execution of next year's Bowl for Kids' Sake fundraiser.

Welcome, Brigitta and Richard! We're thrilled to have you as part of the team!

Two of our most generous corporate partners held golf tournaments in support of BBBSG in September and we couldn't be more grateful!

Skyline charity golfOn September 15th, more than 250 golfers participated in the annual Skyline Charity Golf Classic at Granite Ridge Golf Club in Milton. This annual event is one of the largest charity tournaments in support of Guelph charities, with Skyline and its group of companies donating $25,000 each to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Guelph, the Children's Foundation of Guelph Wellington and Onward Willow: Better Beginnings Better Futures. Skyline's various investors, vendors, staff and stakeholders all take part in this amazing day.

BrokerLink Charity GolfOn September 21st, the 5th Annual BrokerLink Charity Classic took place in support of BBBSG at Guelph Lakes Golf & Country Club. This event, organized solely by BBBSG Vice-President Matt Nelson, raised more than $6,600 for BBBSG, bringing its five-year total to more than $25,000. We would like to thank Matt, the BrokerLink staff and all of their friends and fellow insurance companies for their ongoing support.

If you are interested in running an event and donating proceeds to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Guelph, contact Mike Treadgold, Manager of Development & Communications at (519) 824-5154, ex. 224 or michael.treadgold@bigbrothersbigsisters.ca. We love to hear about your creative ideas and we're happy to lend our expertise and support wherever possible.

kathryn-hofer (1)Kathryn is a very dedicated mentor who has established an amazing relationship with her mentee. They have been matched for over 2 years, and in that time, the two have created a close relationship. Kathryn has become a role model for her mentee and the two have a mutually respectful relationship with one another. Her mentee really enjoys spending time with her and they engage in many fun activities together!

One of her mentee's favourite things to do is bake and cook with Kathryn. Together, they have made all kinds of tasty treats like brownies, chocolate chip cookies, and shortbread cookies! Kathryn always keeps her mentee engaged in a fun activity while they wait for their sweets to bake. For example, they usually like to play board games in this time. Kathryn and her mentee also love to do arts and crafts together in the classroom! The two enjoy spending time together with the teachers in the room, as they make wonderful creations. This also gives them time to chat and enhance their relationship. Thank you, Kathryn, for everything you do! You're an incredible mentor. To learn more about our past Volunteers of the Month, Click Here.

charitable-givingThere are so many ways that YOU can get involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Guelph. You don't need to be a mentor in order to give back to our organization and support local youth in our community. 
Throughout the year, we run exciting events that require a great deal of volunteer help and support, from planning to execution. Our event planning committees meet monthly for 4-6 months leading up to the event, and require all levels of expertise and talents. Not interested in making that kind of lengthy commitment? No problem - even if it's just for a few hours on one day, every event needs volunteers to make sure things run smoothly.

Feeling creative? Why not host your own fundraising event? Barbeques, dinner parties, ticketed events, bake sales, sporting events and bottle drives are just a few ideas how you can apply some of your creativity and Pinterest-laden ideas to an initiative in support of BBBSG. We'd love to help you through the planning phases of your event and perhaps share a tip or two along the way. 

After all of this, if you're not sure how to get started, simply give us a call. A quick informational interview with one of our staff members will help us (and you) learn about your interests and talents, and we can point you in the right direction. Don't delay -- if you've ever thought about getting involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters, today is a great day to start. Give us a call at (519) 824-5154 or email infoguelph@bigbrothersbigsisters.ca to get started. We can't wait to hear from you!

Of course, if your heart is set on being a role model to a child, there's no greater gift that you can give to local youth than the gift of mentoring. Start by filling out our new stream-lined Volunteer Application form and together, we'll work with you to create a lasting match.

One of the greatest individual contributions you can make to an organization is becoming a monthly donor. Your monthly contribution is an easy and cost-effective way to have a small amount of money go a long way and by becoming a donor at this level, you are ensuring that a steady flow of resources are being provided to the organization, allowing for smooth operations throughout the entire year. Monthly giving is simple -- let us show you how to get started!

For as little as $12.50 per month, you can join our exclusive group of monthly donors who have chosen to make Big Brothers Big Sisters of Guelph a part of their philanthropic goals. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could all just forego one purchased lunch per month to ensure that local children are provided with a role model, a mentor and a friend? Transactions are processed automatically once a month, debited from your bank account, and can become an easy part of your regular budgeting. To get started on becoming a monthly donor, click here to fill out the initial form and we'll be in touch with you shortly. To speak to us about other forms of planned giving (bequests, legacies, gifts of life insurance), please contact us at your earliest convenience.