How A Life-long Friendship Began
You may not realize the effect you have on my life. And I want you to know that 12 years ago, my life was vastly different. A chance conversation about mentoring ignited my future potential. I am profoundly grateful.
When I was ten, me and my mother boarded a plane, leaving the only home I had ever known, on Ecuador’s coast. I had no idea what Canada would be like, yet I was excited. I imagined that we were going on a journey to a theme park, and the vacation would never end.
Did you ever make up stories as a child so that you did not have to face difficult or unpleasant moments?
I did not settle into my new life very well. I struggled and lacked confidence. My mother worried about me all the time. As a single parent, she was struggling, too.
A few years after we moved, my mother had a conversation with her boss, and she asked him for advice. Mom wanted to find a positive male role model for me. She was trying her best, but she needed help too. My mom’s boss told her about Big Brothers Big Sisters. He explained that they had mentoring programs just for kids like me.
As a caring and compassionate person, you helped to make sure that a child like me does not have to feel lost and alone. Big Brothers Big Sisters relies on generous community members like you to help them train adult volunteers to be mentors and change lives.
My mom loves me so much. She tried her best but there were things I was really lacking – self confidence – someone to talk with about guy things, learning how to build stuff. Her intention was to connect me with a positive male role model. Someone who would help me to grow my confidence and learn about life.
I did NOT want to go. I struggled with the idea of trusting someone else in my life. But I did not want to disappoint my mother. So, one Saturday afternoon, I agreed to meet this new person in a gymnasium. We talked and hung out. I remembered that I felt very open and safe because they were willing to do what I liked and was interested in. I did not like sports, and in Ecuador, it would have been soccer – and I hated soccer!