Big Brothers Big Sisters to Unveil New HQ

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Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana will Saturday host the official unveiling of its newly-renovated headquarters in downtown Indianapolis. The nonprofit says the 20,000-square-foot building will help improve visibility and attract more volunteers, expand staffing and programming to reach more kids and provide enhanced services. Chief Executive Officer Darcey Palmer-Schultz says the expansion was driven by a waiting list that has grown over the last 10 years from about 300 kids to more than 1,000.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business Reporter Mary-Rachel Redman, Palmer-Schultz said they're looking to grow to serve about 1,500 kids annually over the next few years.

"This space gives us more space for our staff growth that will support that service growth and it also is helping to actually accomplish what we need in terms of volunteer recruitment because we're kind of putting ourselves out there more boldly, trying to be more visible, wanting to engage more people in the community as volunteers in our program," said Palmer-Schultz. "The thing we're most excited about is it gives us a lot of space to do the work that we do. Our bigs and littles are out meeting every day in the community, but we also offer and host a lot of training and events and opportunities that really help those relationships form and help them learn and grow in their time together."

The new location is part of BBBSCI's $7 million RISE campaign, which stems from a five-year strategic plan to boost recruitment, retention and support of volunteers and employees to reach the goal of serving 1,500 children.

"We feel really obligated as part of this community to try and respond to that and so, reaching more of those children, growing the way we have planned, reaching 1,500 kids annually versus 1,100 will make a world of difference and then we hope to use that as a launching pad for what we do next. That's what will make this all worth while is seeing that our community engages with us at new levels and we're able to reach more kids and families as a result."

The nonprofit acquired the building in September and ground was broken on the project shortly thereafter. The building previously served as the home of WFYI Public Media and a hardware store. 

The organization is also celebrating its 50th anniversary in Indianapolis. 

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