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BBBSNEW Blog

MATCH OF THE MONTH | DENISE O’DONNELL & RAVYN

August 1, 2019

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 Denise O’Donnell and her Little Sister Ravyn — our Brown County Match of the Month for August.

Where did you hear about Big Brothers Big Sisters?

Denise: I’ve been aware of this organization for many years – mainly heard of it on television. Bellin Health brought it to my attention a few years back when they partnered with BBBS to encourage employees to become Bigs.

Why did you want to have a Big Sister?

Ravyn: I wanted someone to talk to.

Why did you want to become involved?

D: When I was first made aware of the site-based program, it was something I could commit to and didn’t involve a lot of sacrifice. After three years of a relationship, moving to community-based just made sense!

What do you do when you spend time together?

R: We do arts and crafts and participate in BBBSNEW’s REACH activities. We also go out to eat sometimes and watch movies.

What do you do when you spend time together?

D: We enjoy going to the beach and doing crafts like egg dying, tie-dying and making slime, as well as participating in BBBS events like Board and Brush, the Christmas Party, Segway tours, sailing, the BBBSNEW spring banquet and adventure park.

Is there something in particular that stands out as a memorable time with your Little?

D: Riding the Segways!

Is there something in particular that stands out as a memorable time with your Big?

R: Segway tours. We got to ride across the bridge.

Is there something in the future that you would like to do together, or that you look forward to experiencing together?

D: Bay beach – the new ferris wheel, volunteer at the wildlife sanctuary or Humane Society, a water balloon fight, mini golf.

Is there something in the future that you would like to do together, or that you look forward to experiencing together?

R: Go on the new ferris wheel at Bay Beach.

What have you enjoyed about being a Big?

D: The opportunity to share a world different from the one we both come from. Watching Ravyn grow and mature! Seeing her excitement when trying new things.

In what ways has being matched with your Little affected you and your life?

D: It takes me back to the time when my daughter was young. I always believed it was important for my children to have other adults in their lives to talk to, share experiences, etc. I love getting to share life with her – she brings me joy in what she shares.

What have you learned from your Big?

R: That it’s OK to talk to her about anything, and we have fun together.

How has being matched with a Big made a difference to you?

R: I talk a lot more to people than I did before.

If you had a crystal ball and could see five years into the future, what do you see for yourself and your match?

R: More activities together.

What would you say to others about Big Brothers Big Sisters and to others who are thinking about becoming a big?

D: No regrets!! It’s a beautiful thing to share life with a young child – it keeps you young! You get to see the world again through the eyes of a child.