History

Bits of History - 50 Years of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Lakeshore

1969

Keith Bovee (YMCA) helped form Big Brothers mentoring program aimed at fatherless boys, 18 member Board of Directors

1972

United Appeal (United Way) funds program with $12,000 allocation. The office is located in Mission for Area People, 2 caseworkers are hired (there are only 4 women caseworkers from 5 states)

1973

100 matches made in program and 58 children on the waitlist

1975

United Way recommends a merger with Big Sisters program, a merger happens

1980

Burt Reynolds is the national spokesperson

1980

BBBS mergers with local YFCA

1981

Bowl For Kids’ Sake Fundraiser began (they gave out video VHS recorders)

1988

Over 100 kids are waiting for a match

1980s

Joey Ellis award given to outstanding supporters. Award named after a little brother that died in a fire.

1997

BBBSL expanded to Oceana and Mason Counties

1998

Jim Dreyer swam across Lake Michigan to raise money for BBBS. Attempts to swim Lake Superior.

2001

BBBSL service area expands to Ottawa County

2002

BBBSL partners with Muskegon County Health Department and Community Mental Health to grow a community garden

2005

Bowl for Kids’ Sake Fundraiser promotes “King Pins” supporters that raise at least $500 for organization

2007

E-mentors program – on-line mentoring partners with Muskegon Technical Academy

2009

Susan Harrison Wolffis writes an article in The Muskegon Chronicle on BBBSL 40th year

2018

STEM activities at the Lakeshore MCC Fab Lab are funded through Arconic Foundation

2018

National BBBS rolled our new branding and marketing

2019

50th Anniversary celebration