Look What You've Started

Brian and Jeremiah: Eight Years and Counting

Brian and Jeremiah: Eight Years and Counting

One man really can “Start Something” and make a difference.

Brian has been a Big Brother in the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah program for more than eight years. In that time, he has seen his Little Brother, Jeremiah, grow from a boy into a teen, and is now looking forward to watching him become a man. Brian works as a reporter for his local paper The Spectrum, is a correspondent for USA Today, and has written and published several stories about Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah and its programs and activities.

Brian has shared fun moments of video games, hiking, paint ball, barbeques, and many more fun activities with Jeremiah. More importantly, Brian has been a role model for his Little Brother, who provides guidance with homework, productivity, girls, and all of the issues that accompany growing up.

“I didn’t know much about the Big Brothers Big Sisters program when I passed the organization’s booth at a charity expo in the fall of 2004,” Brian said. “I was there on assignment for The Spectrum, the daily newspaper in St. George, to write about the expo, so I decided to interview the women at the booth for my story. When I finished asking my questions, they began to ask theirs. Eventually, they invited me to join the program.”

Now, eight years later, Jeremiah is a huge part of Brian’s life and their relationship has continued to grow even as Jeremiah has entered his teenage years. “We have more meaningful conversations now,” Brian said. “We talk about life and even love, not just movies and video games.”

In addition to being a Big, Brian has been dedicated to Big Brothers Big Sisters in many other ways. He serves on Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah’s Southern Utah Satellite Board, where he volunteers his time to many of the agency’s fundraising efforts, as well as raises money for his Bowl For Kids’ Sake bowling team every year. He has even been known to motivate his employer to donate money to the fundraising efforts. Currently, Brian is trying to get a trivia night started in St. George to raise money for other Bigs and Littles so that they can have the opportunity to participate in Bowl For Kids’ Sake.

Deanne, Jeremiah’s mother, knows how important it is for her son to have a Big Brother. “It made my son feel like a celebrity when he saw himself in The Spectrum and USA Today,” Deanne said. “Having a Big Brother has been very good for my son’s self-esteem, especially at a time when he didn’t have much.”

Even though Jeremiah has been matched with Brian for many years, Brian is more important to him now than ever before. Jeremiah feels as though he can tell Brian anything and that Brian will listen and give him good advice. “Even after I turn 18 and graduate from the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, I hope to be a part of Brian’s life,” Jeremiah said. ”I view Brian as family, the kind that‘s part of your life forever.”

You can Start Something in your community, just like Brian. Volunteer to be a Big Brother or Big Sister, donate to help provide the dedicated support of professional staff that is critical to the longevity of a match relationship or find the method of involvement that is right for you.

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