BY HAYLEY SMITH
The city of Toronto glows purple on Sept. 18 in celebration of Big Brothers Big Sisters month.
As September comes to an end, Toronto commemorates the non-profit organization by dedicating the whole month to recognize BBBS and raise awareness. As soon as the sun set last night in the city, the CN Tower and the famous Toronto sign in Nathan Philips Square was purple, bringing the community together in efforts to gain more volunteers.
Big Brothers Big Sisters is a non-profit organization that helps mentor young men and women around the world. This program offers role models for youths who need guidance and advice who are unable to build a relationship with a parent. Big Brothers Big Sisters is a volunteer group and allows these volunteers to share their experiences and wisdom, and build relationships.
BBBS month was created to highlight the impact that mentoring can have in the community. Reece Clare, who has been volunteering for just over a year, explained why the colour purple was chosen for this event.
“The official colour that the agency uses is 2592 purple, the logo itself of two people holding hands which creates a heart in between them exemplifies the bond you make with your little throughout the volunteer experience, he said.” It was a clear choice to have these Canadian landmarks lit purple, as it represents the organization best.
According to Reece, the amount of money raised by donations to provide payments for activities was not expected to be significant, instead, he stressed that “the main goal of the month is awareness in an effort to gain more volunteers.” Although having the CN Tower and the Toronto sign lit purple was a huge event, they are also holding multiple other events for BBBS month.
The organization is split up into different zones depending on which region you reside in. Reece is apart of the Halton-Hamilton region and is aware of other events that are going to be taking place. “A big group recreation event will take place that will have soccer, baseball, kites, and many more fun games.” Other places such as the Toronto region and Kitchener region will hold their own events. Depending on where you volunteer, the agency will send you relevant emails with events that are in your region.
BBBS is continuously holding events for their volunteers and their “littles”. They have a long list of big name sponsors that fund these events and plan to ensure that there is a wide variety of options to promote the relationship between volunteers and their littles.
Sept. 18 is a day to celebrate Big Brothers Big Sisters. With the recent launch of #ImagineBBBS, the new campaign builds awareness and helps promote the benefits of becoming a mentor. It advocates for a greater commitment to mentoring, and volunteerism. The organization is currently changing the lives of 40,000 kids across Canada and growing each day.