Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Meet a Match: Justin and Owen


Justin & Owen

Public Relations Placement Student, Rachel McLean, wrote the following about Big Brother, Justin and Little Brother, Owen.

In April of 2012, Justin and Owen were matched by Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Durham in the Traditional Mentoring program. Now, after almost three years, they both say it’s like they really are brothers.

24-year-old Justin says being matched with 12-year-old Owen has really helped them both to grow and mature. “I think the program is incredible. I’ve noticed a huge difference in Owen and even in myself. It’s evident, the purpose that we’re serving as big brothers, which is great. I don’t even really feel like I’m in a program anymore. I just feel like he’s actually my little brother, which is a pretty cool feeling,” says Justin, as Owen smiles and nods along. “It’s amazing,” he chimes in.

Justin says he’s never been responsible for someone so close like a little brother so the match has really helped him to learn a lot about himself as he learned more about Owen, who is now in Grade 7 at Immaculate Conception Catholic Elementary School.

Owen thinks having a big brother is great, and it is easier to stop playing Call of Duty, his favourite video game, when he knows Justin has some fun things planned for the day. “Owen is the only kid in the history of the world who never has homework,” jokes Justin, who tries to make sure they spend as much time as they can doing things outside. Together they do a lot; soccer, baseball, basketball, ping-pong, swimming, paintballing, golfing, and this year they are going on their first camping trip.

Having a big brother is a lot different than having a younger brother, explained Owen, who says he gets along much better with his 9-year-old younger brother since joining the mentoring program. Big brother Justin has taught him to have patience and has helped him to see situations differently with his own little brother, who is also in the traditional program. Owen says the only thing he would change about his match with Justin is that they would spend more time together; their 35-minute distance limits the amount of time they get.

“I’ve always wanted a little brother,” says Justin, who grew up with three older sisters. “I always asked my parents for one for Christmas, and they never gave me one. When I found out there was a huge need for big brothers, it didn’t take much convincing. I jumped right on the chance.”

If you're interested in learning more information about our mentoring programs, please call Cheryl Holmes at 905-985-3733 ext 2.  

This story was recently featured in the June issue of the Focus on Scugog. Read it here.

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