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Comcast gives big boost to Big Brothers Big Sisters

Resource type: News

The Philadelphia Daily News |

by MENSAH M. DEAN Comcast and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America announced yesterday that they have joined to launch a youth-mentoring program in Philadelphia and plan to expand it across the country. Besides the program, called Beyond School Walls, the three-year, $10 million partnership will include airtime on the cable giant’s channels for Big Brothers Big Sisters’ public-service announcements, plus other forms of aid. “This partnership is consistent with our company’s commitment to promote volunteerism and to work with young people in their pursuit of better lives and opportunities,” said Charisse Lillie, Comcast vice president for community investment and the Comcast Foundation’s executive vice president. Judy Vredenburgh, president and chief executive officer of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, said, “We are delighted that Comcast is taking a leadership role in supporting this unique evidence-based approach to solving serious problems too many American youth face.” In Philadelphia, 35 students from Fairhill Elementary School in the Northeast are the first to benefit from the program, which is being run by the mentoring organization’s local agency, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southeastern PA. They spent part of yesterday at Comcast’s Center City headquarters meeting their new Big Brothers and Big Sisters, who are Comcast employees. The employees have volunteered to mentor the children during this school year, meeting with them every other week at Comcast Center. The announcement by the two Philadelphia-based partners came on the same day that Mayor Nutter announced drastic budget cuts to close a $1 billion gap in his five-year financial plan. During his announcement, Nutter also endorsed such partnerships, without mentioning by name the program announced yesterday. “Now, more than ever, we need Philadelphians to step forward, whether it’s volunteering with Town Watch, in the schools or at rec centers,” Nutter said. “We need businesses to partner with the schools to develop the employees of the future.”

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BBBS, Big Brothers Big Sisters