Annual Golf Tournament Helps Mentor Program Bounce Back

The annual CPS Energy Local 500 IBEW golf tournament raised $130,000 in 2017 for Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas (BBBS)  and thanks to the generosity of the tournament’s participants, that donation has kept the nonprofit’s Workplace Mentorship Program going strong.

Through Workplace Mentoring, young students, called “Littles,” are matched with corporate professionals, or “Bigs,” for one-on-one, face-to-face developmental mentoring which trains students to plan for their future careers. The funds raised from the 2017 golf tournament helped keep the program afloat, as the federal grant that was supporting it was set to end that year.

“That generosity was really critical because we were already starting to fear how we were going to continue to fund the program,” said Christina Martinez, Vice President of External Relations at BBBS. “It was an opportune moment to have a relationship with CPS Energy because that golf tournament funding really helped save the day for us.”

The program helps young students envision and plan for their future, simply by interacting with their mentor on a monthly basis. Through mentoring programs like this one, students are 55% more likely to enroll in college, 78% more likely to volunteer regularly and 130% more likely to hold leadership positions.

“Most of these kids have never seen a professional in the workforce,” Christina said. “Once they do, it opens up their world to something entirely different. We see Littles develop a different presence when they walk in a room. And the Bigs love it because they can see how their time and energy spent definitely has an impact on the student and the workforce.”

Bigs and Littles spend time together outside of the workplace as well. (Photo courtesy of BBBS)

Our Corporate Responsibility team worked closely with Christina throughout the process to make sure the tournament could provide as much help as possible.

“We’re honored to share the proceeds of the annual tournaments with charities that support and serve the community,” said Steffi Ockenfels, a project lead on the team. “Giving back, whether through volunteering or a donation, is an important aspect of our corporate culture. CPS Energy’s philanthropic nature is reflected in the generosity of our employees and retirees. Charitable events like the tournament foster stronger working relationships and friendships and exemplify our People First spirit.”

Christina praised the volunteer culture of CPS Energy and was effusive in her thanks to those who helped make the golf tournament such a success.

“CPS Energy has always been civic-minded,” she said. “They care about their constituents and they care about the future workforce. When employers give employees an opportunity to volunteer, they really become part of a movement to do something good.”

BBBS is always looking for volunteers. If you’d like to help out, click here to get more information on becoming a Big Brother or Big Sister.

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