Positively changing Canada

SERVING CANADA’S COMMUNITIES

This year alone Big Brothers Big Sisters impacted over 40,000 youth in over 1,100 communities across Canada.

REPUTABLE AND ACCOUNTABLE

Providing life changing mentoring experiences since 1912, Big Brothers Big Sisters was named One of Financial Post’s Top 25 Charities in 2016.

IMPROVING SOCIETY

Every $1 invested in our programming returns between $18-$23 to society through taxes, higher incomes, volunteerism, and charitable donations.

Accountability

The agency has adopted the Code of Ethics of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada.

Preamble

In the Big Brothers Big Sisters movement, services performed by staff in fostering the personal, emotional and psychological well-being of a child can be generally classified as social work. Social work is then a profession which endeavours to foster human welfare through professional services and activities aimed at enhancing, maintaining, or restoring the social functioning of persons. Its members believe in the dignity and worth of each human being regardless of individual differences. It employs a body of knowledge, skill in human relationships, and methods such as inter-disciplinary cooperation, planning and research. A member of this profession is committed to supporting social institutions sensitive to human needs and supportive of human fulfillment and to changing institutions and systems which do not serve the public good.

As members of the social work sphere, we are expected to uphold the values and goals as generally stated above. We are to use with integrity our knowledge, experience and skills in the interests of persons served.

Out of the fundamental values and principals on which our work is based arise certain professional obligations which in turn determine our professional behaviour.

Professional Obligations

1. To regard the welfare of the individuals, and the community we serve, as our primary professional duty.

2. To hold ourselves personally responsible for our professional conduct.

3. To maintain an objective, non-possessive, non-judgmental professional relationship with those served at all times.

4. To work for social change required to promote the well-being of all citizens and to participate with colleagues and others working for social action designed to effect change consistent with the values and goals of our work.

5. To take steps to protect the community from individuals or groups purporting to offer or provide human services, but whose services are incompatible with the well-being of those to whom the services are offered.

6. To adhere to the confidentiality of all records, material, and knowledge concerning the persons we serve and to use, in a responsible manner, the information obtained in the course of professional relationships.

7. To work cooperatively with other persons having respect for their areas of competence.

8. To not discriminate on the basis of handicaps, disability, race, colour, religion or sexual orientation.

9. To make a commitment to assess our personal and vocational strengths and limitations, biases and effectiveness. We maintain the willingness and ability to recognize when it is in the best interest of those we serve to refer or release him/her to another individual program.

10.To take personal responsibility for continuing our professional growth through further education, supervision or training regardless of level of authority.

11.To be totally committed to providing the highest quality of care through our professional efforts and by utilizing any other health professionals and/or services which may assist the children we serve, and their families, generally.

Unprofessional Conduct

The following behaviour shall be deemed unworthy and as a member guilty of any of these items will have committed a breach of ethics.

1. Without reasonable cause to withhold a service or to fail to give information about availability of service or neglect to render or complete a professional service after undertaking to do so.

2. To fail to respect the privacy and dignity of a client through divulging confidential information without consent, except when required by professional or legal obligations.

3. To violate the legal rights of others.

4. To treat a client with disrespect.

5. To abuse a position of authority or a professional relationship to the detriment of persons served or of colleagues.

6. To generally conduct ourselves in a manner inconsistent with or in violation of, the statements contained under “Professional Obligations”.

VISION

Every Child in Lanark County Who Needs a Mentor, Has a Mentor.

MISSION

“Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lanark County is a not for profit volunteer organization which helps children reach their full potential through consistent, dependable and non-conditional adult friendship.

Our History

The first meeting to launch the local Big Brothers Association was held in Carleton Place on May 16, 1973 resulting in a consent of corporation from Big Brothers of Canada in October 1973. As the agency grew the decision was made to include girls needing our special service, and in December 1982 the first Big Sister met her Little Sister.

Since 1974 hundreds of men and women have offered friendship to local children. These volunteers are screened and receive on-going support and guidance from agency professional staff.

ISSUE

Many children and youth in Canada struggle with societal barriers and face adversities in their lives.

SOLUTION

With the support of a mentor, these risks can be reduced or even avoided, and youth can reach their full potential.

IMPACT

We’re Big Brothers Big Sisters.

We believe every child should have the opportunity to reach his or her full potential, both as individuals and citizens – that by doing so, they will not only do well, they will also do good.

We believe that by changing the course of young lives we can in turn be changing the course of a community’s future. That it could lead to a eduction in poverty and unemployment. Or to safer schools and neighbourhoods. Or to a renewed optimism for growth. That it could even lead to change on a broader, more far-reaching scale.

We believe that opening a child’s eyes to what is – opens their mind to what could be.

For nearly one hundred years, Big Brothers Big Sisters has been making a positive difference in the lives of our nation’s youth by developing and implementing a wide range of mentoring programs. One-to-one and group programs, for both in school and outside of school.

Serving as role models, our mentors teach by example the importance of giving and giving back, of staying in school, and of having respect for family, peers and community. Each time we pair a child with a mentor or introduce a group of students to an in-school program, we start something incredible – a life-changing relationship built on friendship, trust and empowerment.

Witnessing the transformation of a child into a confident, concerned and motivated young person is a remarkable thing. Ushering them into adulthood, seeing them grow into a successful, responsible member of their community and society at large is even more satisfying. Proudly, it’s something our staff, volunteers and donors help bring about every day, and we’re very grateful for their generosity and support.

Whether it’s in the form of time or money there is no more important investment we as individuals can make than in helping our nation’s children realize – and share – their full potential.

We’re Big Brothers Big Sisters, and we believe in the value and values of mentoring.

Our Solution

Many children and youth in Canada struggle with societal barriers and face adversities in their lives like detrimental living conditions, family violence, risk factors for mental health, school issues and identity challenges.

These circumstances have nothing to do with the value of who they are or who they can become, but because of these situations, children and youth risk not having the opportunity to live up to their full potential.

Even worse is the possibility of continuing cycles of poverty and crime or developing mental health issues.

This comes at a cost to the young person, and to society.

With the guidance and support of a mentor, these risks can be reduced or even avoided, and youth are reminded they can be anything they dream of being.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada is a Federation comprised of 108 member agencies servicing more than 1,100 communities across the country. Together we mobilize over 21,300 volunteers who in turn mentor 41,700+ children and young people. That works out to nearly:

2.2 million volunteer hours each year

Each Big Brother Big Sister agency provides direct service to children by matching volunteers and youths in quality mentoring relationships. Our agency staff members are experts at screening volunteers and matching them with a mentee having similar interests.

The national organization provides services and programs to our member agencies to assist them with their work with parents, mentees, and volunteers. Ranging from staff training workshops to our leading Child Safety Program, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada works diligently to ensure we have superior quality programming in all parts of the country.