“The Ascentra Credit Union Foundation sees and understands the demand for a great program such as Big Brother Big Sisters in our community,” said Dale Owen, President and CEO of Ascentra Credit Union. “This is why we have chosen to recommit and continue to support the work of Big Brothers Big Sisters as they push to make a significant difference in our community and for our children.”
The foundation, established in 2013, to honor the memory of past Ascentra Credit Union President and CEO Paul Lensmeyer, has awarded BBBS a $30,000 grant. This grant provides $10,000 per year, over the next three years (2019 – 2021). The grant will help BBBS with program growth and quality in three main areas of focus, the needs of the community, its impact on those needs, and the demands of the program.
The need is to break down the barriers that under privileged youth face in today’s society. One in three children are being raised within a single parent household, many without the engagement of both parents. Twelve percent of children are being raised by someone other than their primary parents. This program’s goal is to meet the growing needs of these vulnerable youth and to help each child achieve their full potential. Success means each enrolled child has the support and resources to develop assets though academic accomplishment and social experiences to be self-sufficient as adults.
“Strong and enduring relationships that children can rely on is critical to their development and success,” said Jay Justin, President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mississippi Valley. “There are thousands of children in our community struggling and looking for someone to single them out and believe in them.”Unfortunately, there are more kids enrolled in the program than there are volunteers. Currently, BBBS has a list of more than 200 children/families who are waiting for a match.
“Big Brothers Big Sisters is honored to partner with Ascentra to drive potential of children in our community,” said Jay. “Ascentra is helping our community come together to insure that children are happy, vibrant and have the tools to be academically, socially, and economically successful.”
Since 2016, the Ascentra Credit Union Foundation has awarded more than $52,000 to help support the mission of BBBS of the Mississippi Valley. As a result, the organization has achieved national recognition for program quality and impact, performing in the top 15 percent of more than 300 affiliates.
About The Ascentra Credit Union Foundation:
Established in 2013, to honor the memory of Ascentra Credit Union President and CEO Paul Lensmeyer and to meet the charitable and educational objectives of the Board of Directors of the credit union, the mission of the Ascentra Credit Union Foundation is to improve the quality of life for the membership of Ascentra Credit Union and further the philanthropic outreach in the communities the credit union serves. The focus of the foundation is on funding work to enhance youth development, expand credit education opportunities, foster community development, support cultural activities, and invest in ways to enhance the financial viability of the underserved. More information can be found at www.ascentra.org/foundation.
About Big Brothers Big Sister of the Mississippi Valley:
Big Brothers Big Sisters provides children facing adversity with strong, enduring, professionally supported one-to-one mentor relationships that change their lives for the better. BBBS has been in the Quad Cities region for over 28 years and has supported more than 11,000 children. For more information about BBBS go to www.bbbsmv.org.