November 17, 2004, is a very special date for Big Sister Molly and Little Sister Hope. This is the date when they first met. Little Sister Hope, having just turned six, was a little ball of energy with a toothless smile and a bright spirit who was excited to meet her new Big Sister. Hope’s life was a cycle of poverty and instability with many moves and school changes, so her mom knew that her daughter needed someone to guide her and help bring stability.
Their match started with swimming, ice-skating and playing basketball, but the relationship has expanded far beyond these weekly activities. One of their favorite times together is when they visit Big Sister Molly’s family at their annual gathering in a small cottage. “Away from school and peers, surrounded instead with activities such as swimming, water-skiing and hiking, Hope transforms into her truest self. She shines,” stated Big Sister Molly.
Big Sister Molly has seen her Little Sister learn to read, write, tell time and ride a bike without training wheels. She has also attended Hope’s fifth-grade graduation, eighth-grade graduation and will soon see her graduate high school in 2017. School has always been a hard endeavor for Hope and with the help from her Big Sister, Hope has a new found passion for writing. Now instead of working on addition and subtraction, Big Sister Molly and Little Sister Hope are taking on issues relating to self-esteem, friendships, boys and the goal of one day becoming a writer.
“I’m thankful every day for Molly and the sacrifices she makes for me and my family. She does every possible thing to help me do well,” said Little Sister Hope. She sees her Big Sister as a real sister, mentor and friend who has inspired her to reach for the stars and to know that nothing is impossible. Her Big Sister stated, “Ten years after that first day, Hope is still a ball of energy with a bright spirit – she’s just a much taller ball of energy whose teeth finally grew in.”