A non-profit that guides youth in Livingston County is said to be graduating and becoming an independent mentoring organization.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Livingston County (BBBSLC) has served the community for over 37 years. As of July 1st, they will become Mentor Livingston Inc. or MLI - an independent mentoring organization serving only Livingston County. Officials say they are excited to be able to continue to provide quality, professionally supported mentoring to youth of Livingston County and the decision to separate from Big Brothers Big Sisters of America (BBBSA) was primarily driven by economics and local needs. While leaving a national organization means walking away from a well-known brand name, they say it also means more control over how the dollars they raise are spent. Funds will now remain local and be invested in Livingston County programs such as Big Futures, Lunch Buddies, and Rockin’ Readers. Officials say they are proud of their partnership with BBBSA and take with them the knowledge and experience gained from being part of that mentoring network – adding they’ll apply everything gained and continue to offer life-changing relationships to local youth in the community.

Meanwhile, a fundraising initiative is underway this month to support 12 mentoring programs in Livingston County of Lunch Buddies and Rockin’ Readers. Organizers say every dollar raised by June 30th will be matched, meaning $15,000 raised actually becomes $30,000 raised and so on. A link to donate is provided. (JM)