DID YOU KNOW…
…that Hopewell-Loudon has been participating in the Big Buddy Little Buddy program for the past three years, sponsored by the Community Youth Mentoring program out of Sandusky, Ohio? The Community Youth Mentoring program has been working with elementary and high school students in Erie County for the past 10 years and has an established program to help improve the social emotional health of at-risk youth. The program is based on lessons around the 40 Developmental Assets, as established by the Search Institute, to help young people make positive decisions, form their own values, and realize their full potential.
Hopewell-Loudon became involved in the program in 2016-17 after the administration was approached by 2017 graduate Marissa Shaver. Marissa saw a need, and had a vision, to get our older students involved with our elementary students to help them make the transition into high school easier. After some research with various organizations in Northwest Ohio, Erie County Community Youth agreed to accept Hopewell-Loudon into the program! We were the first school outside of Erie County to participate. Big Buddy mentors are trained in the 40 Assets, program expectations, mentoring strategies for different age levels, relationship building, and self-esteem building.
As of 2018-19 school year, the Big Buddy Little Buddy program has serviced 65 high school mentors and 65 elementary and junior high Little Buddies. Participants meet weekly for 45 minutes and work through a constructed lesson, preferably one-on-one. The program pairs Bigs and Littles with similar interests to help in the building of positive relationships. At the end of each year, the Bigs and teachers of Littles are asked to participate in a data survey to gauge the effectiveness of the program. As of last year, some areas of note were a 70.7% increase in Confidence, a 75.3% increase in Competence, and a 94.1% increase in Caring. Each year we have also seen an increase in participation for both Bigs and Littles, and this year we have 26 Bigs and Littles to date. We are grateful to the Erie County Community Youth Program for working with Hopewell-Loudon over these last three years to improve the lives of our students!