All young people dream of a bright future–
one that’s full of opportunities.

But considerable numbers of youth in Eastern Missouri face economic, educational and social hardships that threaten their future. Over time, they may begin to feel insignificant and limited by their circumstances.

At Big Brothers Big Sisters of Eastern Missouri, we show up for young people, facilitating the relationships that fuel their pursuit of a meaningful, stable, and independent life.

In partnership with parents and youth and a constellation of support from mentors, educators and community partners, youth can see what's possible—and they feel significant enough to achieve it. Let’s agree, success shouldn’t be situational.

Our Work


actively served

are like rocket fuel.

When young people are surrounded by a network of people committed to their well-being:

  • Self-esteem soars
  • School attendance improves
  • Risky behavior decreases
  • Graduation rates climb
  • Families thrive

With the support they desire and deserve, young people come to understand the future is theirs to define... and they feel confident enough to pursue it.

“He takes me places.”
Heaven, Age 8
(When asked...what’s your favorite thing about your Big Brother?)
We do mentoring, and more.

One-to-one Mentoring

In partnership with parents/caregivers, we match young people with a caring and consistent adult mentor to walk alongside of them, offering encouragement and support.

Big Brothers & Big Sisters

youth matched with one adult

Big Couples & Big Families

youth matched with a couple or family

Big Responders

youth matched with a first responder

Amachi Missouri

youth of incarcerated parent matched with one adult/couple/family

Our Work

One-to-many Initiatives

With the support of schools, business leaders and the greater community, we work to advance learning, make meaningful connections and build a stronger safety net for all.


K-12 school initiative

First Job

skills training for teens

Big Futures

coaching through age 25

Game Changers

corporate leadership program


space to strengthen connections

Our Work
We are not
on a rescue mission.
The young people and families we partner with are some of the most resilient people we know.

There’s a difference between seeing someone as in-need and needy.

The young people we encounter every day have vast gifts and strengths. Some may also need help navigating significant obstacles, but that does not make them needy.

We are not just a “mentoring organization.”

While we offer one-to-one developmental mentoring in our Big/Little programs, that’s only one of the many relationships we cultivate. We bring caregivers, educators and service providers to the table—so youth and their families have all the support they deserve.

All young people matter—no matter what.

Many of the youth we serve experience daily challenges that threaten to limit their options. But regardless of their circumstances, youth matter. And so we relentlessly pursue possibilities so they can have every opportunity for a meaningful life.

The young people in our programs are not “troubled kids.”

They’re like us—they want a shot at a greater life. Participation in Big Brothers Big Sisters’ programs is entirely voluntary, and we aren’t on a mission to “fix” anything—or anyone. Our programs aren't prescriptive; every participant has a voice and a choice.

Everything we do is in partnership with parents.

Parents are the most significant influences in a young person’s life. Our role is to partner with—not take the place of—parents and other caregivers for the benefit of the youth we serve.

We meet youth where they are... literally.

We aren’t a facility where youth gather daily for programs and events. Rather, we’re a collection of people who engage with youth in their neighborhoods and schools. Outings and activities aren’t meant to “remove” young people from their circumstances; they’re only meant to broaden their view of what’s possible.

“I have a village, and I appreciate that so much.”
Eugenia, Mother of three
  • Our 3rd Quarter DEI Progress Report

    Our 3rd Quarter DEI Progress Report

    Where is BBBSEMO on its journey to becoming a place that welcomes, respects, and values all people? This third-quarter progress report lists a few key changes, driven directly by “Three Best Hopes.”