Big Sister Latara and Little Sister Keyshanna
Growing up in a crowded household with many siblings, and young parents, Latara enrolled in her local program with Big Brothers Big Sisters as a way to get to enjoy new experiences. Latara appreciated having someone she could hang out with, and who would be there for her. The incredible impact and experience has inspired Latara to now become a Big Sister too!
Following her time as a Little Sister, Latara grew older and went on to graduate college and earn a Master’s Degree in Education. She currently works as a Pathway Coach for Charlottesville’s City of Promise, a Department of Education Promise Neighborhood initiative. In this role, she helps improve the educational and developmental outcomes of middle school girls and high school boys living in underserved neighborhoods.
Latara wanted to serve her community and to see the rewards that come with lending a helping hand. In 2012, she became a Big Sister with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Central Blue Ridge in Charlottesville, Va. where she was matched with her Little Sister, Keyshanna.
“After college, I found myself with spare time and not really having anything in my life that made me feel as though I was doing my part in the community,” Latara said. “By becoming a Big, I knew that I was signing up to be a part of something bigger than myself.”
Together, Latara and Keyshanna enjoy a number of fun activities, including participating in a local cooking club, doing yoga and arts and crafts. Latara noted that beyond experiencing different activities, ultimately, they enjoy just sharing time with each other. Latara has also seen a marked impact on Keyshanna, who has gone from being reserved and shy to increasingly outgoing.
Latara understands the need for programs like Big Brothers Big Sisters, stating that she feels every child, especially those in need, “should have at least one person in their life who they can go to, helping them to navigate various transitions they will face in their life, challenges and rewards.”