In the News


Mentoring Programs Linked to Improved Academic Performance and Life Skills

QUAD CITIES (September 27, 2016) – The numbers are in and nothing quite offers as good of a “return on investment” for a non-profit donation than investing in the children enrolled in a Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring program.

More than 250 individualized performance assessments were completed on Littles matched in a BBBS mentoring program.  The assessment was administered by the Mississippi Bend Area Education Association (AEA) and completed by the primary teacher if each Little.  Known as the Performance Outcome Evaluation (POE). the assessment is administered at the conclusion of each academic year and is intented to measure improvement areas of children mentored in the organization's School-based mentoring program. 

In order to be statistically valid, a qualifying match needs to have been meeting consistently for at least four months during the academic year. 

The overall performance outcome showed that 67% of children improved in grades since the beginning of the school year (2015/2016). In fact, 53% of the children enrolled in the BBBS program showed academic improvement in two or more subject areas.

"The data suggests that a consistent, positive adult relationship can be a game changer for kids in their academic and social success" states Jay Justin, President & CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mississippi Valley. "Every measurement we look at, from self-esteem, peer relationships, classroom participation to academic performance starts with the consistent relationship."

The POE measures three primary areas-  confidence, competence and caring indicators and was developed through a partnership of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, United Way Worldwide, and the Search Institute. The AEA and BBBSMV customized the POE to localize the measurement tool by individual school and school district.  The measurement also gages the amount of communication between the mentor, parent, and teacher as well. 

The teachers were asked to rate each student involved in the BBBS program with regards to academic performance as well as attendance, participation, self-confidence, expressing feelings, decision-making, risk, self-motivation, peer relationships and trust among others. 

Big Brothers Big Sisters measures outcomes on a regular basis with teachers, parents, adult mentors and children enrolled in all of its mentoring programs. “We believe it’s vital to measure our progress and have a thorough understanding of the impact our programs are having on these children,” says Jay Justin, CEO / President of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mississippi Valley. “I believe our donors expect us to be a research and performance base organization that continues to use information to improve our program and impact."

When teachers were asked a question about the importance of mentoring as part of the school’s culture, 96% said they either agreed or strongly agreed that it was important to their school.

Other outcomes of this POE survey are as follows:

Measured Area:                           % who improved
Self-confidence:                         64%
Ability to express feelings:            62%
Decision-making skills:                 52%
Sense of the future:                     60%
Self-esteem:                              70%
Self-Motivation:                           60%
Behavior (manners / conduct):     48%
Attitude toward school:                61%
Class participation:                   60%
Trust toward the teacher:             60%
Peer relationships                        59%
School Attendance                       34%
Grades:                                      71%
2 or more subject areas:              53%
Extracurricular Activities               57%


BBBSMV also improved in its overall performance of making and supporting matches as well. 

Match retention- 6 month            94%
Match retention- 12 month          70%
Match contact rate                      94%
Average match length              29 months
Click here to view full report.  

For more information about how you can support Big Brothers Big Sisters by sponsoring a Big / Little “Match” or volunteering to become an adult mentor, call 563-323-8006 or email Beth Clark at      



ORGANIZATION DESCRIPTION: Big Brothers Big Sisters provides children facing adversity with strong, enduring, professionally supported one-to-one mentor relationships that change their lives for the better. BBBS has been in the Quad Cities region for over 25 years and has supported more than 10,000 children. For more information about BBBS go to:

ADDRESS: 130 W. 5th Street, Davenport, IA 52801

OFFICE HOURS: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday - Friday


PR/Development Director, Beth Clark (   Cell Phone: 309-269-3455 (if after hours)

 or President / CEO, Jay Justin (jjustin@bbbs-mv.orgCell Phone: 563-343-2964( if after hours)

OFFICE PHONE:563-323-8006

OFFICE FAX:563-333-2494


© 2012 Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mississippi Valley, 130 W 5th Street, Davenport, IA 52801, 563.323.8006