Altrusa International of Warsaw began its holiday celebration July 3 with a program meeting held at Richard’s Restaurant. Guest speaker was Trina Hoy, community development director for Kosciusko County’s Big Brothers Big Sisters.  
According to a press release, Hoy indicated that their program promotes one-to-one mentoring of school age children. They already have 186 matches in the county and have a waiting list for more “big” mentors.  
Big Brothers Big Sisters staff track progress of each matched pair and follows up with both the “big” and the “little” to ensure continuing healthy relationships.  Mentors can participate in site-based programs by having lunch with children in their schools once a week, or they can participate in the community-based program where the mentors take the child with them for various local experiences from time to time.  
Hoy stressed that the organization uses matching criteria to pair mentors with children for fun and inexpensive get-togethers. Generally the pairs share three to four hours per month. Big Brothers Big Sisters and the mentors work closely with parents to improve the children’s outlooks and to give them experiences and guidance that they may not otherwise receive. By listening, encouraging and just being there as a friend, a big brother or big sister can transform a young person’s future.  
According to the release, Altrusan Vicki Martin reinforced Hoy’s presentation by sharing her experiences as a big sister.  She has participated as a big sister for several years. Big Brothers Big Sisters is currently seeking mentors for the upcoming school year.
More information about the Big Brothers Big Sisters program can be received by contacting Hoy at 888-456-1600.
During the business portion of the meeting, Altrusans approved their 2014-2015 budget for their fiscal year which began June 1. The club’s next meeting will be held Aug. 7 at 5:30 p.m. at Richard’s Restaurant. The club is currently welcoming applications for membership.  Individuals interested in serving the Kosciusko County community are encouraged to contact club president, Sue Creighton, at or by phone at 574-269-1170.  
More information about the club may be found on Facebook page Altrusa-Warsaw, IN or on their website at