Rachelle is a mother of six. With one son and five daughters, there’s a lot of personality in her house to keep her busy. As a mother, she wants the best for her kids. And when she started noticing the individual challenges they each were facing, she knew they needed more support.
Three years ago, Rachelle’s oldest daughter, Tamaya, asked if she could sign up for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee.
Tamaya says, “At the time, I was in a hard place. I searched for anything to help and I ran across Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee. I feel like it was the best thing to have happened.”
Rachelle was already familiar with the program through her niece who had a Big and knew it would be good for Tamaya to have a mentor, too. After being matched with her Big Sister, Ann, Tamaya quickly found herself in a better place.
Tamaya’s younger siblings saw how much happier she was after getting a Big and wanted to have Bigs of their own. Her sister Teaira says, “It’s not just that she was having fun, but she came home happier and was doing better with her school work. So, I thought there would be a good opportunity for me to change my grades, too.”
Rachelle now has four kids enrolled in Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee and believes each of their Bigs were their perfect match. She’s seen improvements in their school work, self-confidence and overall mood. “Before her Big, Tamaya was struggling with her grades. She was getting C’s and D’s because she didn’t care,” says Rachelle. “Now that she has her Big and she pushes her more, she’s getting A’s and B’s.”
Rachelle has always known her kids could do big things. One of her daughters dreams of owning her own business just like her mentor, and two of them want to be cardiologists. Rachelle is grateful to their Bigs for also believing in them and helping them realize they can be anything.