Yavapai Big Brothers Big Sisters launches Big Futures, a workforce development program

SEDONA – On May 6, 2023, the new Big Futures program of Yavapai Big Brothers Big Sisters (YBBBS) kicked off at the Yavapai College Sedona Center, thanks to a grant from the City of Sedona.

“Big Futures is a career-focused series designed to help our Littles up to age 24 gain knowledge of skills they will use as they enter into the workforce with the help of their Big,” shared YBBBS Program Administrator Laine Paglia.

The monthly workshop-style series will provide more support to strengthen match relationships and equip youth with the skills they need to thrive so they can graduate high school and obtain post-secondary or career opportunities.

“Our Bigs and Littles came together on the beautiful campus of Yavapai College in Sedona to participate in our first workshop in our Big Futures series. YBBBS is proud to launch this series, as we have strategized for over a year on how we can best address the needs of our Bigs, Littles up to age 24, and their families throughout Yavapai County,” said YBBBS Executive Director Erin Mabery.

“We anticipate we will learn and grow as we adjust this incredible programming component, but for now, we are so excited to have received very positive and constructive feedback. Laine Paglia did an amazing job integrating and implementing Positive Action curriculum in alignment with our research-based mentoring programming, and we are so happy to have her on our team.”

“For our first topic, we chose ‘Developing Confidence’ as this topic spoke to one of the positive attributes that employers are looking for, and by guiding discussions with our Bigs and Littles, we were able to help strengthen their mentoring relationship,” said Paglia.

Future topics include Discovering Who You Are as a Person, Work Ethics, Communication Skills and more. Matched YBBBS youth from 6th grade to age 24 can attend with their Big mentors. Sessions will be held in Prescott and Cottonwood.

The next step in growing the workforce development program involves engaging local businesses and other partners to provide pathways to employment for local youth, addressing pipeline gaps that area businesses are experiencing relating to hiring and retention necessary to developing the future workforce.

To learn more about Big Futures, visit www.azbigs.org/big-futures or call the agency at 928-778-5135 to discuss how you can support this program.

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