Big Brothers Big Sisters Lehigh Valley recently received a fantastic donation of $3,300 from the local Susquehanna Bank in order to help support its High School Bigs Program throughout the Bethlehem Area School District. The district covers the City of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, as well as surrounding boroughs and townships in neighboring Lehigh and Northampton counties.
The donation came in the form of Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) funding. Under EITC guidelines, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lehigh Valley can receive funds and donations from local businesses to support various programs and initiatives related to the expansion of their High School Bigs Program in the school district.
The program works to match elementary school children, or Littles, with Bigs who attend affiliated high schools in the Bethlehem School District. The goal for the program, according to Susan Bartels, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters Lehigh Valley, is to create 50 matches between elementary and high school students.
“We are thankful for the generous support Susquehanna Bank has shown for our High School Bigs Program in the Bethlehem Area School District,” CEO Susan Bartels said. “The bank’s funding will be essential in helping this extremely important school-based mentoring program continue to thrive in the 2013-2014 academic year.”
With a demonstrated effectiveness at improving educational success and self-confidence, avoiding risky behaviors and establishing better relationships with family members and other school children, the High School Bigs Program relies on the EITC funds to screen, interview and train prospective Bigs.
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