Greensboro, N.C. - Amy Clapp needed something to feel more fulfilled in her life when she was in her late twenties. That's when she met Darlene McClinton, an eight-year old girl who had just lost her mom.
Today, they're like family. It's all because of program called Big Brothers Big Sisters.
"I just love her. I've always loved her. I've always thought of her as my first child," Clapp said. "She just always makes me feel really good. She's just wonderful."
McClinton said, "Amy is a symbol of consistency. Amy is a symbol of support. Amy is symbol of working hard."
McClinton is now a professor at A&T University and a gifted artist. She says she owes much of her success to Amy.
"I really want to give all that I can give to Amy. There's nothing that I could ever do to repay her for her time and her thoughts and everything she's done in my life," McClinton said. "What she's done for me is intangible. So, I'm just trying to give as much as I can give back to her."
Big Brothers Big Sisters matched them more than two decades ago.
"It helped me to find myself as a person. It helped with my self esteem and self-identity," McClinton said.
Clapp added, "I feel privileged to be in her circle...I'm so proud of her."
After Darlene went to college, Amy bought her a car. Last year, Darlene returned the favor and bought Amy's daughter a car.
Big Brothers Big Sisters is looking to match nearly one-thousand kids with adult role models in the Triad. It requires a weekly commitment to spend time with the child for one year.
A study found children enrolled in Big Brothers Big Sisters are:
* 52 percent less likely to skip school.
* 37 percent less likely to skip a class
* 46 percent less likely to start using drugs.
The program is especially looking for men of color to serve as Big Brothers.
There are four branches of the organization in the Triad:
Big Brothers Big Sisters Greater Greensboro
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Central Piedmont
Big Brothers Big Sisters Forsyth County
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Davie County
WFMY News 2