Board members of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bridge, Carbon County welcomed their new caseworker to the local organization.
Caseworker Jenna Sargent joined the Carbon and Monroe county chapters as a caseworker this fall. She is a graduate of Wilkes University with a degree in psychology and philosophy. In addition to being a caseworker for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bridge, she is also a Big Sister through the organization.
"I am, perhaps most importantly, a Big Sister. I wanted to be sure that I could still be a Big Sister if I took the job," she added.
In the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, volunteer mentors and children meet weekly to take part in a joint activity that engages both the adult and child, whether that activity be playing sports, going to the park, or enjoying a movie together.
Volunteers are asked to commit 1-3 hours per week to the program for the duration of one school year, although some volunteers continue to mentor their "Little" for several years.
As the sole caseworker for the Carbon County chapter, Sargent is the main connection between potential Bigs and Littles. Her primary job is to find compatible matches between volunteers and children seeking a mentor.
"I interview and screen volunteers, to get an idea of their likes and dislikes and their personalities. I do the same thing with the children," she said. "Once the match is made, it's my job to keep in contact with the Little's family and the volunteer to make sure everything is going well."
Perhaps the most exciting part of her job is finding the perfect match bringing together a mentor and child who will work well together and share the same interests.
"I have a match meeting with a girl who is very artistic, and a volunteer who is also very artistic," she said. "I was so excited about the match. I like knowing that I'm making a difference, even if it's in a small way."
To learn more about Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bridge or to refer a child or volunteer as a mentor, go to www.bbbsnepa.org or call (800) 955-4376.