Reservist Gives Back as a Big Brother - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Reservist Gives Back as a Big Brother

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Big Brother Isaac Moreno with his Little Brother Jiland Big Brother Isaac Moreno with his Little Brother Jiland

As a reservist in the Navy, Isaac Moreno is always ready to answer his country's call.  He also gives back in another way that can help rescue and turn around a young person's life-- as a volunteer for Big Brothers Big Sisters.  "I feel real drawn to it just because of my background. I think a lot of military members would probably feel the same way because they carry so much experience with them and to be able to give that experience and push it back into the community I think is just a good thing," says Moreno.

Isaac and his little brother, 10-year old Jiland, have been together for about two and a half years and have become good friends.  The time they have together has certainly left an impression on Jiland, who is all smiles when he talks about his big brother.  "I like the way he laughs.  When I feel sad, he helps turn my day around," he says. 

Jiland and Isaac have formed a positive bond that many children don't have.  John Kendricks, the executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Coastal Empire, says there is a great need for male mentors in our area-- especially minorities.  "We have over 150 kids on a waiting list and most of those kids are boys of color and its so difficult to get men to understand and realize the importance they can have in a child's life," says Kendricks.

Big Brothers Big Sisters screens volunteers and then pairs them children who are in need of a positive role model or just need someone to spend time with.  "They can actually attach to somebody that can show they care and give their lives meaning, give them support and encouragement in doing well in school, and getting the correct values to become a productive and successful citizen," says Kendricks.

Research has shown that positive mentoring, through the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, can be a power force influencing children's behavior.   One study showed that after 18 months with a big, children were less likely to use drugs, skip class,  or show aggression.  "It doesn't take a whole lot of time but it's definitely time well invested," says Moreno. 

If you are interesting in learning more about volunteering for Big Brothers Big Sisters or donating, call (912) 233-7669.  The non-profit organization is also seeking sponsors and teams for it's annual "Bowl for Kids Sake" fundraiser coming up May 17th in Savannah.





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