Mr. Speaker, today I rise in the House to pay tribute to Big Brothers and Big Sisters organizations across the country, and in particular in my home riding of Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough.
It was with great honour that I was chosen to be the honorary chairman of the annual bowl-a-thon in my riding that took place last weekend, which raised over $38,000. Similar events took place across the country.
I am very thankful for my experience as a big brother with Matthew Jardine. For many years volunteering my time to this organization was an important event in my life. In return, Big Brothers and Big Sisters organizations have given me a great sense of community and pride.
Being a big brother is probably one of the most positive experiences a person can enjoy. I feel tremendously rewarded by having been involved in this program.
Today I urge all hon. members of the House to donate time and, where appropriate, money for this worthwhile program. Big Brothers and Big Sisters enriches the lives of all those who choose to make the commitment to be a big brother or a big sister. In this day and age, with so many people facing challenging times, particularly young people, having a stable influence in their lives and a person who cares is what is so unique and fantastic about these organizations.
My main hope is that more people will become involved in Big Brothers and Big Sisters so that the number of organizations will grow throughout the country for the benefit of all those involved.
I wish Big Brothers and Big Sisters continued success as they enrich the lives of so many.