Volunteer shares experience in Big Brothers Big Sisters program during the pandemic

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BUFFALO N.Y. (WIVB) – The organization Big Brothers Big Sisters is struggling to find mentors for its program. They’re in need of about 160 volunteers to match with kids across Western New York.

Piotr Gasiorczyk has been a Big for more than a year now. He says because of the pandemic he’s had to make a few changes to how he spent time with his Little, Kristian.

“We were kinda limited to texting each other, calling each other. We would do facetiming and such,” he said.

The pair could hang out in person again around June and would spend as much time outdoors as possible.

“Playing some basketball, playing football, we’ll go for a bike ride we took a walk through Williamsville as well and got a bite to eat,” Gasiorczyk said. “So through COVID-19 we’ve been able to adjust to that and we’ve been able to see each other more often.”

Now that his little is back in school he says he checks up on Kristian to make sure he’s adjusting to his new remote learning schedule. He says having the chance to mentor during this time has been a valuable experience for himself and his Little.

“The opportunities that this allows the youth in Buffalo for both young boys and girls to be able to have a mentor outside of their current household,” Gasiorczyk said. “I think it’s very important to learn new things to try new activities and to gain some different experiences that may not always be available to them.”

Volunteers have to be 18 years or older to sign up to be a Big. Click here to apply.

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