Nonprofit spotlight: Big Brothers Big Sisters of St. Johns County


Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) is not your typical organization. We help children realize their potential and build their futures. BBBS of St. Johns County serves all of St. Johns County. Our mission is “to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.” We do this by providing an additional level of support for children through being matched with a caring adult mentor – the Big Brother or Big Sister.

BBBS offers school- and community-based mentoring programs that provide enriched experiences and positive role models. After a thorough screening process (which includes an in-depth interview, reference checks, Level 2 background screens, and home visit), a volunteer “Big” is matched with a child (the “Little”). Children are referred to the program by their caregiver or their school. In the site-based program, matches meet for one hour per week at the child’s school. In the community-based program, matches meet for a few hours a week out in the community. All matches receive professional match support (a hallmark of the BBBS program nationally) to aid with developing strong, long-lasting matches.

There are many opportunities to get involved in and/or support BBBS of St. Johns County. Volunteer “Bigs” are always needed – especially males. While BBBS does not currently have a site-based program in Ponte Vedra, it is on the strategic plan of the organization to expand to schools in the area. However, community-based matches are made in Ponte Vedra and some Ponte Vedra residents travel to the site-based programs located in St. Augustine.

BBBS has several fundraisers that allow the organization to expand to new sites as well as maintain current matches. These include:

Great Chowder Debate - this annual event hosted by The Conch House in St. Augustine has chosen BBBS as the beneficiary this year. The debate will be held on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2017.

Tips for Kids Sake – the major fundraiser of BBBS, this popular and fun event pairs locals as celebrity waiters at area restaurants with tips donated to BBBS. In Ponte Vedra, Aqua Grill, Bogey Grille and Lulu’s Waterfront Grille participate in this February event. Businesses and individuals are invited to participate as celebrity waiters.

BBBS Specialty License Plates – when it’s time to renew your tag, consider purchasing the beach inspired BBBS tag.

In addition, businesses often sponsor the annual BBBS Holiday Party as well as match activities such as the Summer Picnic and Spring Game Night.

For more information on how to make a difference in the life of a child, call (904) 829-9986 or visit

Provided by Big Brother Big Sister of St. Johns County