Greg & Lawrence: Little Moments. Big Impact.

Greg & Loyce Dettman

Greg & Lawrence: Little Moments. Big Impact.

Bigs often discover that simple experiences provide Littles with the biggest life lessons… even if no one realizes it at the time. This was the case for Big Brothers Big Sisters Advisory Council member and former Big Brother, Greg Dettman. Matched with Little Brother Lawrence in 1978, the pair shared everyday activities that still have an impact on their lives almost 40 years later.

“Whether it was playing basketball or going to the lake. He lived with his grandparents who were in their 70’s, his mother was not involved in his life, and he never talked about his father. Our match took him out of his neighborhood and introduced him to a lot of places he hadn’t seen before, and as he said later, places he probably wouldn’t have had a chance to see.”

Being matched provided Lawrence with a wealth of experiences that expanded his world. “One of the annual adventures Lawrence and his wife go on is a camping trip every summer,” said Greg. “He told me once, ‘I wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t for you. You are the first person who took me camping. I didn’t know what camping was and I had such a good time. I enjoyed seeing the stars.’”

“To me, it was just a camping trip,” said Greg. “To him, it was life-changing.”

Simple experiences opened up possibilities Lawrence might never have considered. “I think this is what it’s all about, giving kids a positive experience. Showing them not what is, but what can be,” said Greg.

Even something as simple as a drive to the coast to see Greg’s family created moments of impact. “Lawrence had recently gotten low marks on a spelling test. On the drive, we were passing billboards. I started pointing out words on the signs and challenging him to spell them,” said Greg. “I was kind of killing time. But to him, it was a game, and it was fun, and he remembered the words. I didn’t realize until later that it had actually helped him with his spelling. He said it was the best spelling exercise he’d ever had.”

Lawrence calls Greg on Father’s Day, on his birthday, on Thanksgiving and on Christmas. The two are still in contact all these years later.

Small moments. Big impacts. That’s the power of mentoring.

Please consider making a gift to Big Brothers Big Sisters to create more impacts like these for children in our community. It takes only moments to give, but your gift can make a world of difference for a child.


Thank you!

See video comments from Greg and his wife Loyce HERE

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