Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) of the Cayman Islands is pleased to announce the engagement of Gregory Smith as Executive Director of Strategic Development. Beginning in mid-September, Mr. Smith will serve a six-month, targeted assignment to help BBBS Cayman scale its operations to serve more children and adolescents providing greater impact to the Cayman community.
In September 2019, the Board of BBBS recognized the need to change its operating model and was on course when the pandemic brought plans to a halt. During the COVID-19 lock down and in the months since, hundreds more children are having to cope with adverse childhood experiences resulting from the pandemic, e.g. increased changes to living arrangements, concerns about food security, loss of family income or unemployment and a number of unattended health issues arising from lack of health insurance. Left unaddressed, these adverse childhood experiences can lead to negative impacts on a child’s emotional and social development, underperformance at school and an increased likelihood to engage in risky behaviours.
Explaining the purpose and objectives of the newly formed role, BBBS Chairman Pilar Bush stated “With his dedicated efforts in the coming months, Greg’s experience and expertise will help our volunteer Board of Directors and staff implement necessary changes to improve current processes and scale our operations to have a lasting, positive impact on more children and adolescents in our community.”
Previously serving as the CEO for the YMCA of the Cayman Islands, Mr. Smith has over 25 years of non-profit management experience and is regarded as a highly talented leader in the areas of strategic planning, leadership development, team-building and organisational development.
The plan is to elevate the level of measurable positive results the renowned mentoring programme has in the Cayman Islands by implementing proven methodology for identifying, pairing, and addressing the critical developmental needs of the youth and mentors serving the BBBS programme. As a former Big Brother himself, Greg has witnessed the benefits of the programme first-hand and is excited to rally further support as he strategically transitions the organisation to higher levels of success.
“So many youths in these Islands will benefit from having a committed, strong role model in their lives as a ‘Big Brother or Sister’, and it’s one of the most meaningful volunteer opportunities an adult can have to serve as a ‘Big’. My role is to build upon and strengthen the existing systems of recruitment, support, and evidence-based results to demonstrate how powerful the impact BBBS can have on our youth who will benefit the most”.
With support from bigger BBBS affiliates in the US and Canada, a strong governance model and a community committed to volunteering, the Cayman chapter of BBBS seems very well positioned for a period of significant growth.
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