Grainger Foundation Donates $10,100 To Big Brothers Big Sisters

By Emma Koch - 21Alive

December 23, 2013 Updated Dec 23, 2013 at 1:36 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (21Alive) -- The Grainger Foundation has donated $10,100 to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Indiana in support of its mission to help children reach their potential through professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships with measurable impact.

“This grant will be used to help put kids in need on the path to success by providing them with a mentor,” said Josette Rider, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Indiana. “Currently, more than 70% of our ‘Littles’ waiting are boys, yet only about 30% of our volunteers are men. We are going to use this money to help match new kids with a mentor, with an emphasis on matching these boys to provide hope for their futures. Plus, they’ll have a little fun too because our programs are set up to allow both the ‘Big’ and the ‘Little’ to enjoy each other’s company in just a few hours a month. We are grateful to The Grainger Foundation for its generosity.”

In 2012, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Indiana and Southcentral Michigan supported 1,993 matches between volunteers and children in need, and the agency has already supported more than 2,000 matches this year. It won Agency of the Year, Board of the Year, and had the Big Sister of the Year – all on a national level. This was the third time winning Agency of the Year (2006, 2009, and 2012), and the first time receiving recognition as the National Board of the Year. Children in Big Brothers Big Sisters’ programs are: 52% less likely to drop out or skip school, 42% more likely to get a college degree, 46% less likely to use illegal drugs, and 33% less likely to hit someone.

This donation was initially recommended by Ryan Kenny, Services Team Leader of W.W. Grainger Inc.’s, Fort Wayne location. After conferring with Clint Foor, Ryan Berry, and Jeremy Bunnell, Branch Managers at W.W. Grainger, Inc.’s, Fort Wayne, South Bend, and Elkhart locations, they decided Big Brothers Big Sisters was their choice as the recipient. Grainger has been a part of the Northeast Indiana business community for more than 80 years as the leading broad line supplier of maintenance, repair, and operating products.

“We are proud to recommend the programs offered by Big Brothers Big Sisters,” said Foor. “We understand the need for one-to-one mentoring in our local community and are strongly behind it as an avenue to help our youth.”

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