Big Sister Susy Garcia connects with her Little Sister Gili on multiple levels, particularly their shared Colombian heritage. Gili moved to the United States from Colombia and was faced with learning a new language in a different culture.
Susy helped Gili acclimate by sharing her own experiences and by working with her on her English skills as part of the Big Brothers Big Sister school-based program, Bigs Inspiring Scholastic Success, at Indian Ridge Middle School.
Coming from another country and speaking limited English was only one of Gili’s challenges. Born with a cleft lip, Gili was teased and bullied by classmates, beating down her self esteem and prompting her to withdraw from school activities. Susy diligently worked with the sixth grader to help build her self-confidence both socially and academically.
With Susy’s help, Gili has improved in reading, writing and math. Both Big Sister Susy and Little Sister Gili look forward to connecting over the summer and resuming their match in the coming school year. Their match is a result of a partnership between Big Brothers Big Sisters of Broward and Mujeres Latinas Impulsando Mujeres Latinas, designed to encourage Hispanic/Latina adolescent girls to stay in school, pursue high academic goals and encourage healthy attitudes and safe practices.