Branch Banking & Trust Company (BB&T) was founded over 143 years ago in response to a community need. At that time, help was needed in the Civil War-torn counties of North Carolina, where the bank’s founders set up tables in farm fields to provide trustworthy and reliable banking services to field workers – something in short supply at the time. BB&T provided low-interest loans to help rebuild farms and businesses that had been decimated by the war, restoring the economic health and vitality of the communities they served along the way.
That same commitment to community continues today, and it lies at the heart of BB&T’s relationship with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas.
BB&T’s partnership with BBBS stems “from seeing the great work that BBBS does… from helping Littles maintain and improve their grades, to increasing their matriculation rates,” said Blake Absher, Austin market president for BB&T and a former Big. “BBBS takes one child at a time and empowers them and works with them to create self-esteem, to create pride, and to help them find new opportunities for success in life. We have the same core values, and that’s why we’re so passionate about our alliance with BBBS.
“As an organization, one of our primary goals is to make the communities we serve better places to be, and that’s what BBBS’ work is clearly all about as well,” Absher continued.
And these aren’t just hollow words. “We encourage our employees to have a strong sense of purpose, and to get actively involved in giving back,” Absher explained. “Many of the members of our leadership team have served as Bigs, and have seen first-hand the difference that mentoring makes.”
This year, BB&T has taken its support to a new level by becoming BBBS’ first-ever Diamond Sponsor for the agency’s annual Ice Ball gala. Funds raised at this special event help BBBS provide mentoring services to youth year-round, and BB&T’s investment will support the formation of life-changing mentoring relationships for a number of children and families in Central Texas.
But the good news doesn’t stop there. BB&T has made a commitment to support BBBS as a Diamond level sponsor for three years. BB&T branches are also publicizing and promoting the August 22nd gala, and encouraging customers to get involved in supporting BBBS as well.
“At BB&T we have a saying: ‘No one can do everything, but everyone can do something,” said Absher. “Investing in young people by supporting BBBS’ mentoring services is an investment in the future… one that makes a difference for us, for BBBS, but most importantly for youth, for families and for the greater community as a whole.
“Investing in one another is the greatest investment we can make. We are proud to partner with BBBS of Central Texas to contribute to our community in a way that will have a positive impact now, and for years to come.”