Organization Description

Mission: Having a mentor makes a big difference, and kids today need mentors now more than ever. Whether they live with one parent, two parents, guardians or grandparents, having a mentor can be an important resource for kids from all backgrounds to help build upon their skills and foster their potential. Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Hampshire County (BBBSHC) helps families make these important connections and gain access to vital resources by matching adult volunteers (“Bigs”) with kids ages 6 to 14 (“Littles”). Through these meaningful one-to-one mentoring matches, we help children build their futures and strengthen their communities. Together, with parents/guardians, volunteer mentors, and partners in the community, our professional case managers support young people as they develop these positive relationships.

Smith students find that this opportunity is a great way to create a richer college experience as well as a diversion from stressful college life. Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Hampshire County draws upon the goals and program model of Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America to develop programs that meet the needs of our community. We create and support mentoring matches between young people ages 6 – 14 and mentors. These matches get together 2-4 times per month, engaging in activities that are fun, relationship-building, and that help them to grow. Case managers work with volunteers, families, and young people to identify which program is right for them. We have a thorough screening process for volunteers to ensure the safety of the young people in our program. Matches between Bigs and Littles are made based on location, personalities, interests, and goals, and receive ongoing support throughout their duration. 

Goals: The goal of Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Hampshire County programming is to create and support mentoring relationships that ignite the power and promise of youth. The program is committed to assisting young people in achieving their highest potential as they grow to become confident, competent, and caring individuals. We also provide our volunteers with professional support, supervision, outreach to families, and enrichment opportunities. And don’t forget: HAVE FUN!

Placement Description

  • Big Sister/Brother: Spend time 2-4 times per month with a child from the community (The location of the placement will vary depending on the location of the ‘little’)
  • Interns: Internships are available and can be tailored to complement or enhance many areas of student academic concentration or major
  • Work Study: Assist in the office, help with a weekly after-school group, and help with various events throughout the year (the Holiday Potluck and other events)
  • Skills:
    • Desire to have fun with a child and make a difference
    • Ability to follow through and keep a 3 semester commitment to the program
    • Ability to schedule activities
    • Good interpersonal skills
    • Ability to speak Spanish is a plus but NOT required
  • Training: Online information sessions are readily available for anyone interested in learning more about our volunteer opportunities. Contact Susan Nicastro at or by phone at 413-266-9035 for more information. Volunteer training/orientation is provided as part of the volunteer application process.

Time Commitment

  • After school hours
  • Flexible hours but 2-4 times/month

 How to Get Involved

Contact Information