Big Brothers Big Sisters Named #1 Nonprofit for At-Risk Youth by GuideStar’s Philanthropedia

PHILADELPHIA, PA, September 9, 2011 – Big Brothers Big Sisters earns Philanthropedia’s top ranking on a list of most recommended, high-impact national nonprofits serving at-risk youth. The nation’s leader in quality, one-to-one youth mentoring, Big Brothers Big Sisters received praise for its effective mentoring model that leads to positive and measurable youth outcomes for children who face adversity, as well as for its organizational leadership and community outreach.

A subsidiary of GuideStar, Philanthropedia surveys foundation professionals, researchers, academics, nonprofit senior staffers and other experts on their views of charities’ impact and organizational strengths. GuideStar is the industry leader in nonprofit data, providing information to donors, partners, governing agencies and others to enable them to make informed decisions with regard to charitable giving.

Backed by research supporting its effectiveness, Big Brothers Big Sisters holds itself accountable for helping children who face adversity achieve positive, measurable outcomes, including educational success, higher aspirations and confidence, improved relationships and risky behavior avoidance. The organization relies on funding to carefully make mentoring matches and provide ongoing support to mentors, mentees and their families, helping sustain the long-term, successful relationships unique to its programs.

“We are honored to be recognized as the leading non profit to serve this population of young people who are facing many challenges in life,” said Karen J. Mathis, president and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. “Our network of nearly 370 agencies in communities across the country work diligently to provide children who face adversity with professionally supported mentoring relationships that are enduring and lead to positive youth outcomes and lifelong success.”

Big Brothers Big Sisters’ first place ranking was the result of recommendations from 88 national at-risk youth experts with an average of 19 years of experience in the field. These experts looked at nonprofit organizations that worked with children they considered to be “at-risk,” including some involved with the foster care or the juvenile justice system; runaways and homeless youths; kids who have dropped out of school or at risk of not graduating; and teen parents. Big Brothers Big Sisters, which primarily serves children of single, low income or incarcerated parents, ranked first in only nine organizations recommended in the area of at-risk youth.

For additional information about Philanthropedia’s research and reviews of nonprofits that serve at-risk youth, visit

About Philanthropedia
Philanthropedia (recently acquired by GuideStar) improves nonprofit effectiveness by directing money to and facilitating discussion about expert recommended high-impact nonprofits. As of September 2011, we have leveraged the wisdom of 2015 experts to provide reviews on 318 top nonprofits across 19 causes.

About Big Brothers Big Sisters
For more than 100 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters has operated under the belief that inherent in every child is the ability to succeed and thrive in life. As the nation’s largest donor and volunteer supported mentoring network, Big Brothers Big Sisters’ mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.

Partnering with parents/guardians, schools, corporations and others in the community, Big Brothers Big Sisters carefully pairs children (“Littles”) with screened volunteer mentors (“Bigs”) and monitors and supports them in one-to-one mentoring matches throughout their course. The organization holds itself accountable for children in the program to achieve measurable outcomes, such as higher aspirations; greater confidence and better relationships; educational success; and avoidance of delinquency and other risky behaviors. Most children served by Big Brothers Big Sisters are in single-parent and low-income families or households where a parent is incarcerated. Headquartered in Philadelphia with a network of about 370 agencies across the country, Big Brothers Big Sisters serves nearly 250,000 children. Learn how you can positively impact a child’s life, donate or volunteer at