Each month, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Wisconsin shines a light on the relationships that we are helping build within our community. Please help us congratulate Big Brother Kyle Klotzbuecher and his Little Brother Collon, both of Shawano — our Shawano County Match of the Month for December.
Where did you hear about Big Brothers Big Sisters?
Kyle: I had heard about it from a peer in the business and always had an interest in giving back and making an impact. Then I sat next to the director for our area at a joint Rotary event and we moved forward from that conversation.
Why did you want to become involved?
K: I wanted to get involved to help make an impact. Also, it was fun hearing the stories and the impact that a peer that was already involved has had on his Little Brother. I’ve always had that desire to help others experience different firsts in their life and just make a positive impact. I learned quickly that BBBS was a great way to do just that.
Why did you want to have a Big Brother?
Collon: To have someone to trust, to help me with homework, to have someone to have for a friend and do activities with.
What do you do when you spend time together?
K: A wide range of activities from homework or school projects, fishing, going out to my cabin, board games, going to the library for a new book that he enjoys, watch some movies, getting ice cream, mini golf, playing catch with football, or shooting some hoops.
What is your favorite memory with your big?
C: Going fishing. Going to the Larry McCarren Show and when Larry signed my shirt. Going to the BBBS Board of Directors meeting at the Schrieber Foods building in Green Bay and getting to sit around the big table with everyone — it made me feel like I was in the movie “The Wolf on Wallstreet.”
Is there something you would like to do together in the future, and why?
C: Go hunting together once I complete hunter safety in the next couple months. To get a deer and a turkey.
Is there something in particular in the future that you would like to do together, or that you look forward to experiencing in the future?
K: One of the big ones coming up is he would like to go hunting. But next is getting his hunter safety course completed so that he will have the opportunity to be the hunter, which he is excited about. That will be a big focus coming up once the class opens. That will be a fun process and watching him learn what hunting has to offer, but also the safety side of it.
What have you enjoyed about being a Big?
K: I enjoy seeing the excitement on his face when we hang out, the conversations and seeing how that has changed as he is growing up. I enjoy just knowing that myself and all the other Bigs are making a big difference in kids’ lives even if we don’t always realize it right away.
What is something that you learned from your Big?
C: Self-confidence and to always keep trying your best.
In what way has being matched with your Little affected you or your life?
K: It has been very eye-opening about little things that I may take for granted at times. It has given me a greater appreciation of time spent with him as it is highly rewarding in helping him and seeing him grow. It is great to see how he has grown and to continue to watch him grow.
Actually, from just answering these questions with him and hearing what he had to say about how it has affected his life and the things he has learned was probably one of the most memorable things. The conversation that came from it, I never would have guessed that he would have answered that way but I feel that goes to show just how he is growing and maturing as well.
How has being matched with a Big made a difference in you?
C: Helps me to focus more in school. I have my No. 1 friend on my side.
What would you say to others about Big Brothers Big Sisters and to others who are thinking about becoming a big?
K: That it is worth it with the comments and the excitement from the Littles. It doesn’t matter what you do. All that matters is that you give them time and being with them. Even if you feel rushed at times or if you had a long day at work, after hanging out with your Little, it just changes your mood and perspective. They don’t care what you do. It doesn’t always have to be this major event. All they are looking for is just some time with you. It is worth looking into or talking to someone involved to learn more.