ESCANABA, Mich. (WJMN) – The Delta County Big Brothers, Big Sisters program is now The Youth Empowering Services of Delta County, or “The Y.E.S. Program.”

Partially funded by The Community Foundation for Delta County, the new Y.E.S. program is a more streamlined and simplified version of The Big Brothers, Big Sisters program. The Yes Program is a school-based group mentoring initiative that will help students of various backgrounds and family structure. No longer just for children of single parents, the new program will work with local schools to identify kids in need of mentoring and match each student with the right person. The new structure will maximize the limited pool of volunteers as well as provide greater security for Volunteers and children alike. Executive Director Tiffany Hewitt says the YES program will improve upon the great work of the Big Brothers and Big Sisters.

“This is different from Big Brothers Big Sisters, that we don’t have a community-based program, ” said Hewitt. “We’re not sending a child into the community, you know, in a in a position where we aren’t sure if there are risks or maybe a uncomfortable situation that we can’t be made aware of. So, the stability factor is better where it’s a safe place in the school, safe place for the child safe place for the volunteer, and it’s also a consistent program that the kids can look forward to each week”

Program Director Patrick Bradway says the group setting will enable them to serve a wider range of at risk youth.

“It cuts down on the liability of community member and a kid hanging out by themselves,” said Bradway. “And it just creates an atmosphere of a group. We’re doing group mentoring within the schools, and we’re going to be where the kids are and just make it a lot easier.”

If you would like more information about volunteering or donating to the Y.E.S. Program, visit their website at: www.youthempoweringservices.org