TAMPA, Fla., Feb. 15, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- WellCare Health Plans, Inc. (NYSE: WCG) announced today that the WellCare Community Foundation has committed up to $250,000 annually to support Big Brothers Big Sisters of America (BBBSA), the nation's oldest one-to-one youth mentoring organization, and its "Bigs in Blue" program, which recruits local law enforcement officers to serve as mentors to youth in their communities.
Many communities suffer from a growing tension between youth and law enforcement. Bigs in Blue connects young people with officers who have volunteered to be mentors in communities throughout the nation, helping to build strong, trusting, lasting relationships between law enforcement and the families they serve.
BBBSA is engaging its network of more than 300 local affiliates for the Bigs in Blue program. To support these efforts, the WellCare Community Foundation, whose mission is to foster and promote the health, well-being and quality of life for the nation's most vulnerable populations, committed up to $250,000 annually over three years and will actively help support recruitment efforts in the following cities:
- Chicago, Illinois
- Columbia, South Carolina
- Louisville, Kentucky
- New York, New York
- Omaha, Nebraska
- Orlando, Florida
- Tampa, Florida
"Big Brothers Big Sisters connects young people with caring adults, forming meaningful relationships," said Pam Iorio, BBBSA President and CEO. "Bigs in Blue helps create deep connections between police and the communities they serve. By combining the power of mentoring with the generous support and contributions of our partners, like WellCare, we can positively impact children's lives and contribute to brighter futures."
Through the program, local Big Brothers Big Sisters affiliates will recruit law enforcement officers to volunteer to serve as Bigs for youth who live in the communities they serve. Each mentoring relationship is a one-to-one match that is supported by the local BBBSA affiliate.
"The value of mentoring is priceless. It has the ability to change a child's life and has been shown to help young people, especially at-risk youth, lead healthy and productive lives," said Ken Burdick, WellCare's CEO. "We're delighted to partner with Big Brothers Big Sisters to help eliminate social barriers, while supporting our local law enforcement officials, our members, their families and the communities we serve."
To learn more about Bigs in Blue, visit BigsinBlue.org.
About WellCare Health Plans, Inc.
Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, WellCare Health Plans, Inc. (NYSE: WCG) focuses exclusively on providing government-sponsored managed care services, primarily through Medicaid, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription Drug Plans, to families, children, seniors and individuals with complex medical needs. WellCare serves approximately 3.9 million members nationwide as of Dec. 31, 2016. For more information about WellCare, please visit the company's website at www.wellcare.com or view the company's videos at https://www.youtube.com/user/WellCareHealthPlan.
About the WellCare Community Foundation
The WellCare Community Foundation was established in 2010 and is a nonprofit, private foundation. Its mission is to foster and promote the health, well-being and quality of life for the poor, distressed and other medically under-served populations – including those who are elderly, young and indigent – and the communities in which they live. The WellCare Community Foundation carries out this mission by supporting work that helps people live healthy, safe and productive lives, and by assisting groups with serious and neglected health needs. Underscoring this mission is the WellCare Community Foundation's goal to serve as a national resource that fosters an environment where there is a continuum of education, access and quality health care, all of which improve the overall health, well-being and quality of life of targeted beneficiaries.
About Big Brothers Big Sisters of America
Big Brothers Big Sisters provides children facing adversity with strong, enduring, professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships that change their lives for the better, forever. Big Brothers Big Sisters ensures that the children in its program achieve measurable outcomes, including educational success, avoidance of risky behaviors, higher aspirations, greater confidence, and better relationships. This mission has been the cornerstone of the organization's 113-year history. With over 300 affiliates across the country, Big Brothers Big Sisters has served more than 2 million children ("Littles") in the past 10 years. Learn more at www.bbbs.org.
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SOURCE WellCare Health Plans, Inc.