BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) – Big Brothers of Big Sisters of Northwest Florida fosters one-on-one mentoring throughout Bay and Okaloosa counties.

In Bay County, there are 18 kids waiting for a mentor. This means 18 kids are signed up and ready to be matched with a mentor willing to share their time with them.

However, the organization needs mentors to pair them with.

“Anyone can be a mentor,” said Leanne Gaudet, Match Specialist for Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Northwest Florida. “We’re definitely looking for select people though. We get our mentors based on character, personality, and stability.”

Gaudet said mentors, or “bigs,” essentially share their time with the children they mentor, or “littles.”

“We encourage low cost and free activities,” said Gaudet. “We want the kids to know it’s about time, not money.”

Gaudet said they ask mentors to commit to mentoring for a least a year and spend time with their “little” once a week, or every other week.

“It is a commitment, we don’t want to downplay that.”

If you’re interested in becoming a mentor, check out their website. You can also call (850) 763-KIDS to speak to Leanne about becoming a mentor to see if it’s a good fit.