Big Brothers Big Sisters McHenry County (McHenry, IL)


  • Name:Sharon Smith
  • Title:Grant Manager

Organization Address

  • Organization Name:Big Brothers Big Sisters McHenry County
  • Address:4318 W. Crystal Lake Road
    Suite B
    McHenry, IL 60050
    United States

Organization Phone

  • Main phone:815 385 3855

Organization Web

User Email


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  • Mission:
  • Our mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.

    Our vision is that all children achieve success in life.

  • Overview:
  • At-risk youth served by our agency primarily come from low-income, single-parent homes throughout McHenry County. Many of the youth have lost a parent through death, divorce, imprisonment and abandonment. Eighty percent of the youth currently served are living in single-parent households and 86% of the youth are from low-income households. These youth face an environment that lacks emotional stability and parental involvement, allowing for behaviors that lead to delinquency, academic failure, gang involvement and drug or alcohol abuse. The youth we serve are ages 6-18 years old, both genders and all ethnicities. Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring programs benefit at-risk youth by providing them with positive role models who will expose them to new opportunities, helping them to develop new interests and engage in healthy activities that build self-esteem, improve their relationships with peers and adults, and improve their school attitude and performance to help the child succeed, catch up or stay caught up to others in their grade academically and socially, and reach his or her potential. One-to-one relationships help children to become productive members of their community.

    BBBS has three core programs: Community-Based Mentoring and our two site- based programs: After-School and Lunchtime Mentoring. Children in our program (“Littles”) are referred by school personnel, social service agencies, parents and/or caregivers.
    Our Community-Based Mentoring Program matches volunteers and children based on common interests and geographic location in the county. These matches engage in activities such as cooking or baking cookies, going to local parks, playing sports, going to the movies and participating in community service projects together.
    Our After-School Program takes place at 14 schools and resource centers throughout McHenry County. The program utilizes high school students to provide tutoring, help build social skills, participate in school improvement projects and provide the opportunity for our Littles to build a trusting relationship with a positive role model.
    During our Lunchtime Mentoring Program, held at 13 schools, businesses and corporations throughout the county allow their employees to leave the workplace one day each week for one hour. These volunteers travel to local elementary schools to eat lunch with the child. Together these matches play games, do arts and crafts, perform community improvement projects and provide any academic assistance the child’s teacher suggests.

    All volunteers (“Bigs”) undergo a rigorous screening process to ensure the safety of our Littles. This includes an in-home interview, checks for warrants, arrests and convictions through the Illinois State Police and FBI fingerprinting process, a motor vehicle records check, a sex offender check, three character references and a Department of Children and Family Services check to be sure the prospective volunteer has never been accused of abuse or neglect.

    All matches participate in an ongoing evaluation and support process supervised by a professional case manager. This continuous case care helps ensure longer, stronger matches that improve the odds that Littles will perform better in school, avoid violence or illegal activities and maintain stronger relationships with their parents and peers.

    A Public/Private Ventures study found that, relative to their non-mentored peers, Littles showed improvements in the following teacher-reported outcomes:
    • Overall academic performance
    • Quality of assignments completed
    • Number of homework and in-class assignments completed
    • Reduction in serious school infractions, including principal’s office visits, fighting and suspensions
    • Fewer skipped school days

    Evaluation is an important component in all of the work we do and dictates changes and improvements that need to be made to our program design. Our evaluation efforts include report card review, statistical record keeping of number of children enrolled, number of mentors enrolled, matches made, length of matches, school attendance, suspension records and classroom behavior reviews.

    In 2014/15, our goal is to provide 336 matches in the After School and Lunchtime Mentoring Programs. Our average match length will increase to 16 months. We expect an 85% retention rate (matches in place with participants effectively engaged in mentoring activities) at 6 months.

  • History:
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of McHenry County was started in 1984 as a program of Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church called Kinship. Initially funded by United Way, the agency served children and the elderly by providing mentors. In its early years, the program had a small budget with one part-time staff person and served a minimal number of clients.
    In 1993, the organization spun its elderly program off to Senior Services. The agency then became affiliated with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, concentrating on serving youth only. The agency had one full-time staff person at this time and served a minimal number of children through community-based mentoring.
    In 1998, the agency expanded its mentoring services to include 16 site-based programs in schools throughout McHenry County. Part-time staff was added and the number of children served began to grow to a high of 283 children in 2003. In 2004 the agency received a federal grant and service was expanded to include the children of prisoners encompassing two locations outside of McHenry County, Carpentersville and Elgin. New site-based locations were developed in low-income housing units and Boys & Girls Clubs in the neediest neighborhoods. The number of children served grew to 434 at the end of 2005. By year-end 2009 the agency achieved a record 620 children served and continued to expand its efforts to serve more children in need with quality matches each year. In 2010-2011, a nationwide trend to improve the quality of the services we provide led the agency to maintain the number of children being served while scrutinizing every process and operational policy and procedure. This exercise resulted in fewer overall children served in 2012, but those that were enrolled in our programs were served better.
    Armed with improved systems and using learned best practices, we thoughtfully and deliberately began increasing our service levels again and in 2013, we served 516 children, through our three core programs, at 25 sites across the county. We have added two more sites in 2014, for a total of 27 active connection points supporting our After School and Lunchtime mentoring programs

  • Year established:1984
  • Endowment:Unknown


  • Organization type:Grantseeker
  • Country of registration:United States
  • Tax Determination Letter:Received Determination Letter
  • IRS Section:501(c)(3)
  • IRS Subsection:None
  • Tax ID:36-3354265

IRS Business Master File Information

  • EIN:363354265
  • Sort (Secondary) Name:
  • Care Of Name:
  • Organization Address:4318 W CRYSTAL LAKE RD STE B
  • Organization City:MCHENRY
  • Organization State:IL
  • Organization Zip:60050-4299
  • Group Exemption Number:0000
  • Subsection Code:03
  • Classification Code(s):1
  • Subsection/Classification Desc.:Charitable Organization
  • Affiliation Code:3
  • Ruling Date:June, 1985
  • Deductibility Code:1
  • Foundation Code:15
  • Foundation Code Desc.:Organization which receives a substantial part of its support from a governmental unit or the general public 170(b)(1)(A)(vi)
  • Activity Code(s):328, 995
  • Activity Code Desc.(s):Combat juvenile delinquency, Described in section 509(a)(2) of the Code
  • Organization Code:1 (Corporation)
  • Exempt Org. Status Code:01 (Unconditional Exemption)
  • Tax Period:June, 2016
  • Filing Requirement Category:01 (990 (all other) or 990EZ return)
  • Accounting Period:June
  • NTEE Code:O31
  • Asset Amount:$415,155
  • Asset Code:4 ($100,000 - $499,999)
  • Income Amount:$471,348
  • Income Code:4 ($100,000 - $499,999)
  • 990 Revenue Amount:$380,207
  • Last Updated:2/22/2018 2:45:26 am

This information is directly from the IRS Exempt Organization Business Master File at Exempt Organizations Business Master File Extract. This information is not under the control of the Common Grant Application and is collected and compiled and can only be changed by the IRS.