You've Got a Friend in Me
Terik and Corey have been matched almost two years and they say their common bond is athletics. They play soccer together, shoot hoops, ride bikes, and play tennis. They even enjoy watching sports together! Along with playing sports they have painting The Rock in Ann Arbor (Terik's favorite event) and volunteering at Ypsilanti PRIDE day. But their time together isn't always out and about, Corey is known to have family dinners at Terik’s home, which they say gives them a chance to have nice talks.
When asked to reflect upon their time together, Corey says “He [Terik] has really opened up about the struggles all of us have as teenagers, whereas in the beginning he was reluctant to share many personal details. He has helped me realize, that it is only through sharing the challenges of life, that we are able to receive the advice and assistance for succeeding through them.” Corey feels that Terik is much more future-oriented, thinking about the next step in his life, high school. And beyond Terik's goal of playing soccer professionally, he wants to attend college. Corey isn't the only one seeing the difference, Terik, himself has an understanding of the impact of the time that they have spent together, sharing, "I've changed how I study and now have the confidence to get good grades. I'm excited about high school.” Terik also noted that since being matched with Corey he has improved his conflict resolution skills. Where before he might have used physical means to settle a conflict, he now is better able to recognize alternatives such as walking away, talking to a support person, or discussing things with the other person.
Of course Terik is not the only person that has changed throughout this match. Corey believes that Terik has helped him become more appreciative of the “serenity of silence and the importance of peace and being mindful of the situation.” He goes on to say that Terik is a positive influence and support person for his friends and everyone he meets, since he cares so much about other people and is eager to pass on everything he has learned from the important people in his life with others.
Terik and Corey’s match is a great example of a Supportive Relationship. Their story describes the changes that can happen when a young person receives the support they need from their one-to-one relationship with a Big Brother or Sister. Support is just one of the 40 building blocks of development that researchers have identified to help young people grow into healthy, caring and responsible adults. In keeping with our goal to help children reach their full potential through their social, emotional and academic growth, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washtenaw County incorporates these building blocks into the training and supports that we provide Bigs, Littles and their families.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washtenaw County is proud to be a part of friendships like Terik and Corey's. We love being able to Start Something that makes such a positive difference in the lives of the children in our community.