FOX CITIES, Wis. (WFRV)
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Fox Valley Region and Best Friends of Neenah Menasha have announced they will merge together into a single organization: Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Central Wisconsin. The merger will take effect January 1st, 2020.
Right now, the two organizations support a combined 600 youths, ages 6 to 18, in Outagamie, Calumet, Waupaca, and Winnebago Counties.
“Both of our organizations focus on providing youth with adult mentors or friends to help them as they go through adolescence,” said Lindsay Fenlon, Executive Director, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Fox Valley Region. “Our research found that coming together under one roof, combining our resources, both financially and from a volunteer perspective, would allow us to operate more efficiently, effectively, and sustainably, and really serve more kids.”
Fenlon will the Chief Executive Officer, while Jamie Kriewaldt, who currently serves as Executive Director of Best Friends of Neenah Menasha, will be the new organization’s Chief Program Officer.
“We are committed to serving our youth and families and helping them succeed,” Kriewaldt said. “And through this merger, it will only increase those opportunities and make them stronger.”
Fenlon said youth mentorship programs are key to the success of future generations.
“The single greatest predictive factor that determines whether a kid overcomes adversity or succumbs to it, is the presence of one trusted, non-parental adult,” she told Local 5. “That’s all it takes… What we’re doing is setting up our future generations for better success.”