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Little girls dream of having an older sister. Someone who they can look up to, go on adventures with, and trust. However, not everyone has this person in their life. Big Sisters of Greater Racine fills that void through their nonprofit organization, where they connect girls ages 5 through 14 years old with what they call a “big sister.”

Big Sisters of Greater Racine is not an affiliate of Big Brother Big Sisters of America. This nonprofit organization is a local group that benefits girls in the Racine County area. Current board member and former youth participant, Teahelahn Keithrafferty, talked about the benefits of this organization.

What does Big Sisters of Greater Racine do?

Since 1968, this nonprofit organization has helped to shape the lives of young girls and transform them into young women. Woman 18 years or older serve as mentors. Pairing them with a child helps promote positive development. This program is known to “change lives, two by two.”

A big sister is paired with a little sister. Together, the two tackle adventures in Racine County. The big sister acts as a safe space. The duos attend activities together such as hiking at River Bend Nature Center. Through experiences in Racine County, friendships are made.

The Program in Action

Teahelahn Keithrafferty, a former Racine resident, now resides in Kenosha. She’s currently giving back to the program that set her life up for success. She was in the 3rd grade at Red Apple Elementary School when Keithrafferty and her sister began participating in the Big Sisters of Greater Racine. Keithrafferty credits her guidance counselor, known as “Bongo,” for suggesting enrolling.

As a child, Teahlahn and her sister built a strong relationship with their appointed big sister. Keithrafferty says, “Till this day, I still keep in touch with my big. My sister and I still have an incredible relationship with her.”

Without knowing it, her big sister changed her life for the better. Uniquely, Sue Fishbain and her daughter both served as “bigs” to the Keithrafferty sisters.

Teahelahn Keithrafferty is a first generation college graduate and now is in a full-time position to help assist others with the process of going to college. Her story and years spent with Big Sisters of Greater Racine shows that this program truly does change lives.

As a board member, Keithrafferty is working tirelessly to give an unforgettable experience to those currently are in the program. However, COVID-19 has caused complexities. Despite difficulties, Big Sisters of Greater Racine is operating at this time.

Going Virtual

Just like many Racine businesses and organizations, COVID-19 has caused a shift in their operations. Typically, events that Big Sisters of Greater Racine hosts and attends, are in person. It’s a chance for the girls to get out and explore. Now, however, the organization is following measures to ensure safety for its volunteers and participants.

Changes have impacted this group and now is a time where they could use the help of Racine. With the holidays coming, they typically have a holiday event. However, Keithrafferty explains that Big Sisters of Greater Racine is seeking out ways to make the most of this season. Brain storming is underway, but the mission to serve still remains.

Supporting Big Sisters of Greater Racine

It’s time that you become a part of the legacy of Big Sisters of Greater Racine. To become a role model and big sister, click here to find out how or email Karen David at for more information.

If you are a woman of color, your involvement in Big Sisters of Greater Racine would be highly appreciated. To promote diversity and inclusion, Big Sisters of Greater Racine welcomes anyone of any ethnicity and race to join. There is value in showing ‘littles” a diverse environment.

Maybe becoming a Big sister isn’t the path you’d like to take. You can still support this nonprofit through monetary donations. Make a donation via PayPal by clicking here or through Amazon smile. To learn more about how to activate supporting via Amazon smile, click here.

To read more about Big Sisters of Greater Racine, check out their website here.

Non-profit Information

To read about what is happening in the nonprofit world in Racine and Kenosha County, click here.

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