HAMILTON, Ohio — A group that helps mentor kids in need now needs help. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Butler County is running short on volunteers.

What You Need To Know

  • Organizers with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Butler County said they have 300 volunteer mentors, and that's still not enough for the kids waiting for a "big" or volunteer mentor

  • Organizers said there are currently about 150 kids on a waiting list for a mentor and about 60% are young boys 

  • BBBS said COVID is likely behind the shortage and the reason more kids and their families are reaching out for help

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Butler Bounty is ramping up ads about the mentorship program because organizers said there just aren’t enough mentors.

“We have about 300 mentors, and we need over 100 more to serve the kids who are waiting,” said Becky Perkins, vice president of Marketing and Outreach for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Butler County.

Perkins is trying to figure out ways to get through to possible volunteer mentors but she said at the same time that waiting list of kids keeps growing.

“We have almost 150 now, and I think that’s due to the effects of COVID. A lot of them were isolated during COVID. They didn’t have the support of their school community when the schools were closed down,” said Perkins.

It's the reason she said the need for volunteer mentors is even more critical. 

According to the most recent research from AmeriCorps, an average of about 33% of residents in Ohio already volunteer. Perkins estimates that number could be even less because of what they're seeing happening now.

“A lot of adults are stretched thin from COVID themselves, whether it be unemployment or family struggles. Certainly with inflation going on, people have a lot on their plate,” said Perkins.  

She said they’re hoping the payoff from volunteering and helping a child in need will help, but that child might just have to wait. 

“We don’t wanna turn any child away, but we’re just very upfront with them and their families, that it might take a while to find a mentor for them,” said Perkins. 

For more information about BBBS of Butler County or if you'd like to be a volunteer mentor, click here.