News Release



For More Information:

William R. Steinhaus
Dutchess County Executive
Telephone:  (845) 486-2000
, FAX: (845) 486-2021,

Elizabeth Doyle, Community Development Administrator
845/486-3600, FAX: (845) 486-3610,  


September 10, 2002


County Approves Funding  for Big Brothers, Big Sisters Program


Poughkeepsie… Dutchess County Executive William R. Steinhaus has approved a contract for the 2002 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) awards for $18,750 to the Dutchess County Community Action Agency’s Big Brothers, Big Sisters program. Funding for this program is directed through the Dutchess County Department of Planning and Development

The mission of Big Brothers, Big Sisters is to make a positive difference in the lives of children, primarily through professionally supported, one-to-one relationships with caring adults. Big Brothers, Big Sisters strives to provide a committed volunteer mentor for every child in need in order to assist them in achieving their highest potential as they grow to become confident, competent and caring individuals. 

According to County Executive Steinhaus, ”The Big Brothers, Big Sisters program provides  children with something very valuable- a caring adult in their lives, someone to confide in, relax with and look up to. And as a result, these children do better in school, have better relationships with their family members and friends, and are more likely to avoid violence and drugs. This program reaches out to children at a pivotal time in their lives when even small changes in their behavior can alter the course of their future.” 

Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Dutchess County has been part of the community since 1965 and has matched approximately 115 children with adult volunteers each year. The volunteers must commit to regular contact with the child for at least one year. Recent survey results from volunteers and parents/guardians of children who participated in the program indicate that 50% of the children showed improvement in their academic performance, their attitude toward school and their relationships with teachers, as well as improvement in their relationships with peers and increased self-confidence. Big Bothers, Big Sisters plans to reach 120 children this year. 

This award was based on priorities previously established in the County’s Consolidated Plan for the use of CDBG funds. The plan has been accepted and approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). 

The CDBG funding is administered by the Dutchess County Department of Planning and Development through HUD, and provides grant funds to municipalities and human service agencies to benefit low to moderate-income residents of Dutchess County.


2002 Press Releases