ROANOKE, Va. – It's day one of Big Brothers Big Sisters' 60 Men in 60 Days Recruitment Campaign for children in need of a mentor.
The majority of the children in need are boys.
Damartae, 8, spent the afternoon playing Marble Ball alone.
“I wish I had a Big Brother,” said Damartae who already knows some of the activities he would want to do with a Big Brother. “Play football and read,” he said.
While recruiters are keeping their fingers crossed that someone will volunteer to be Damartae's mentor, he is one of 100 children on a waiting list and one of the 83 boys on that list.
“It's a huge discrepancy across the board for all organizations. Women volunteer more often than men and we find boys really need male mentors,” said Natanis DeMascio, special events and recruitment coordinator of Big Brothers Big Sisters.
For the next 60 days, both the recruiters and Demartae hope more volunteer mentors will step forward.
"Children we serve are in critical stages in their lives and face adversity," said DeMascio. "They need someone to give them a great outlook on life and be helpful to them when they need it most."
“We are trying to get them a mentor that can get out and do things in the community with them and spend some time with them it makes all the difference,” said Beth Reedy, an educational support specialist with Big Brothers Big Sisters.
For more information on becoming a volunteer mentor, go to Big Brothers Big Sisters at www.bigslittles.org.