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Meet the Team: Brooklyn Groenheide

Meet Brooklyn Groenheide, Big Brothers Big Sisters’ (BBBS) Senior Mentoring Relationship Specialist (MRS). As an MRS, Brooklyn pre-matches Bigs and Littles, opens matches, and checks in with Bigs, Littles, and their families every month to make sure everyone in a match is happy, safe, and getting the support they need. She also helps plan activities for matches, like our annual Back-to-School celebration, and is involved with our High School Bigs program, which matches elementary school Littles with middle or high school Bigs for once-a-week activities.


While looking for a job after graduating from Grand Valley State University, Brooklyn knew she wanted to work with kids. She spent time applying to nonprofits in the area and soon found out about BBBS.

“I had never heard of Big Brothers Big Sisters before I saw the website and it sounded like a really cool job to have, and a really cool agency to be involved in,” Brooklyn shares. “I was going to volunteer to be a mentor before I applied for a job because it sounded like something that’s really important in the community.”


Brooklyn’s extroverted nature and love for meeting and talking to new people makes her an enthusiastic MRS.

“It’s always fun hearing about how the matches are going and hearing about what else [the Bigs, Littles, and their families] have going on in their lives in general,” Brooklyn says. She also loves meeting members of the community at work events. “I really like meeting new people and just hearing their stories, learning about them, getting to know them, and getting different perspectives.”

Brooklyn’s ultimate goal is to give support to the families and Bigs she works with, as well as her coworkers. “As an MRS, we’re like the middleman between the people we serve and the agency. So, any way I can help support them through their match and anything else they may need, anything our agency is able to help them with, I hope I can be that resource.”


Brooklyn comes from a family that values spending time outdoors. While growing up, her family raised pigs, turkeys, chickens, and they currently have cows. Whether she’s going for a walk, working out, reading, or relaxing at the beach or pool, Brooklyn loves spending time outside. Although she doesn’t watch TV very often, she does like to watch sports – especially basketball and football.


Brooklyn isn’t a Big herself, but she loves hearing stories from Bigs, Littles, and their friends and families. While working at events, it makes her so happy to hear people say things like “my sister was a Little and now she’s a Big.”

The positive impact Brooklyn has seen from her matches inspires her to encourage others to volunteer.

“Think of any cousin, aunt, friend, coach you had growing up. How many hours did they pour into you?” she asks. “We’re only asking for a couple of hours twice a month to spend time with a kid that maybe needs an extra friend, someone to spend one-on-one time with, talk to them, listen to them, and also just have a lot of fun with.”