Donnevin Wolfe has been a Big Brother for nine years with Little Brother Maurice.
Why did you become a Big Brother?
Donnevin Wolfe: I became a Big because I really didn’t have a male figure growing up. We had some negative experiences with my father, and I’m a man of faith. When I turned 18 it was something I really couldn’t run away from. It wasn’t ideal timing since I had just graduated high school and was starting college, but it was something that felt right. I called them up and went through the process and met Maurice when he around 6 or 7 years old.
What is your profession?
Donnevin Wolfe: I am a human resources generalist with Do It Best.
How did you hear about becoming a Big?
Donnevin Wolfe: I knew they were around because I was a Little in the program, I had a Big Brother who I was matched up with for a few years. Then I got back into it from a mentor perspective at 18.
Did you have any hesitation about becoming a Big?
Donnevin Wolfe: Only just because I was 18 and I wasn’t really established career-wise or financial-wise. I understood it wasn’t really about that, it was about the time you spend with them. As long as I was able to be committed to spending time with my Little, then everything would work out.
How long did it take you to feel comfortable with your Little?
Donnevin Wolfe: About three years. I think I can pretty much talk to anyone, but from the Little’s standpoint, it takes about three years for them to really get comfortable and say, “OK, the person is here and is not leaving and I can trust them.” It was about three years for both of us to open up and talk about experiences and create that bond going forward.
What’s the best thing about being a Big?
Donnevin Wolfe: I’m a younger sibling myself and my older siblings weren’t really ideal role models. Through BBBS I am able to fulfill that role of a role model and having someone who actually looks up to you and asks you for guidance. It’s pretty cool being that person that they can go to for anything.
How soon did it take you to realize you were also being impactful as a Big?
Donnevin Wolfe: It had to be probably when he was 11 or 12 years old. My little was going through a lot of changes but I was here for him and anything he wanted to discuss we would. It was good for him to know that I had gone through this and was able to help him. Can we have more of those types of discussions? That probably doesn’t sound like fun, but we are really making a difference.
Has it ever been challenging?
Donnevin Wolfe: Yes, I think it was towards the end of my two-year degree that I had a full-time job and a lot of internships, and I actually considered closing the match. I remember the day, I was just getting out of class, I had to go to work, and my Little is hitting me up to go out and do some things. It seemed like too much, I talked with my case manager at the time. We just kind of worked with myself, Maurice and his mom and decided to cut back out outings for a certain timeframe until I finish off this degree and then pick it back up them. My case manager was really reliable for me in that state to not close the match.
What are some of the fun things you’ve done with Maurice?
Donnevin Wolfe: Definitely go-karting, we’re really big movie heads so we’ll go to the movies a lot. He thinks my house is this really big “Real World” TV home, and it’s really not. It’s a Fort Wayne home, but he thinks it’s a mansion and he loves to come over and hang in the basement and play games. It’s pretty basic, but it’s the time spent that really goes the long mile.
How often have you talked to your friends about becoming Bigs?
Donnevin Wolfe: I’m more of an introverted person, so I don’t really have too many individuals that I’m friends with. Most of the friends that I do know either work at Big Brothers or are Bigs already.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Indiana has a waiting list of more than 400 children hoping to meet their Big Brother, Big Sister or Big Couple. More than 300 of those are boys, so we’re introducing “Manly Mondays” to ask men throughout the area why they enjoy being a Big Brother. To volunteer for the program or get more information, call 260-456-1600 or go to our website to fill out a volunteer form https://bbbsa.force.com/bbbsforms/s/?type=big
To see more stories of our Matches, head over to our YouTube Page https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFtgkq3e_XeZqYdBqcMAJRw