Big Sister, Little Sister Connection is Trophy Worthy

Dawn and Mollie

Dawn Splan, 69, and Mollie Cline, 14, will be celebrating their fourth match anniversary on March 26. They were matched as Big Sister and Little Sister in 2011. The story of their match is best told in quotes from monthly match contact and award nominations from Dawn, Mollie and Mollie's mom.

Mollie's mom shares, "Dawn is the best BBBS volunteer Mollie could have ever been given. Dawn is very dedicated to Mollie in so many ways, which I greatly appreciate. Mollie has done very well this year in 6th grade and I feel Dawn contributed to that. She picks up Mollie every Tuesday and Thursday from school and takes her to her house to work on reading and writing. Mollie has blossomed in so many areas which I also feel are attributed to her time spent with Dawn. There is a classiness about Dawn that comes with age just like wisdom. I am not able to teach or share these characteristics with my daughter like Dawn has. Mollie has found a true friend in Dawn. She has exposed Mollie to parties and events at her home, where Mollie has been able to socialize. Without Dawn she would not have had these opportunities. There is protectiveness for Mollie I feel expressed by Dawn and above all that has touched my heart the most."

Mollie wrote in her nomination for the Big Sister of the Year Award, “I nominate Dawn because she is the best Big Sister ever. I wouldn't want to be with anyone else. I love spending time with her, she is so funny. I can tell her anything. She makes me smile, laugh and makes me feel special. If I could summarize Dawn in three words they would be: loving, brave and outgoing. She has impacted my life so much and I am proud of that. Dawn is a person who will never let you down."

Dawn shares about an activity with Mollie, “Last Tuesday, in celebration of our 3rd anniversary, I gave Mollie a trophy. It’s gold, about 10 inches tall, with a big gold star on it and a pink (Mollie's favorite color) "crystal" base with an engraved plaque, "For Mollie, the best little sister ever. You mean the world to me. Love, Dawn."

And dear little Mollie, who rarely shows any kind of emotion, actually made a small gasp when she saw it, then with awe in her voice said, "Oh, it's beautiful!"

It did my heart good, and I stifled a tear. Mollie gave me a beautiful card with lovely sentiments that she added herself! Another tear! Then came the surprise. Mollie and I played hooky! I took her out of school 45 minutes early (with mom's permission of course) so we could go to the movies! It was a special day. I hope it's one of those rare unexpected events that Mollie will always remember."

Big Sister Dawn shared the following after attending a school concert to watch Little Sister Mollie.

"Tonight was the Greenville Middle School Christmas Concert. Mollie has sung in the choir all 3 years. In 6th grade, quiet, shy, introverted Mollie's mouth barely moved. And sometimes it didn't move at all. When and what she sang was a little hit and miss. Most of the time her chin was kind of tucked into her chest and she sort of slumped like she was afraid someone might actually look at her.”

“In 7th grade, Mollie sang like she had some confidence. You could see that she was truly singing, not just mouthing a few words! Tonight, as an 8th grader, she stood tall with perfect posture, held her head up proudly, and not only did she sing with confidence, knowing all the words to all the songs, but her little head was just a bobbin' to the music. Bless her heart. I was so proud!"

Dawn and Mollie's match has not only impacted their lives, but also the lives of our agency staff as we have been fortunate enough to witness the development of their relationship as they share activities that include social events, gardening, learning experiences and playing hooky! Dawn's dedication to Mollie has addressed all areas of her life including social, educational, physical and emotional in everyday activities and events provided with thoughtfulness, love and caring. Mollie has been "the best little sister ever" in returning the love and friendship that Dawn has shared.

This story was submitted by Leah Talaski of Big Brothers Big Sisters. Submit your own mentoring story. Or learn how to become a mentor!