It leaves a direct and lasting effect in the lives of children across East Tennessee.
For Jean Fremont of Knoxville, he does that by giving his time.
You may know him as Mean Jean as a night host on WKHT 104.5 FM, and the voice you hear on nighttime radio.
Fremont is a radio personality, sports enthusiast and a huge difference in the life of a young boy named Marcus.
“I really got lucky,” Fremont said.
When Fremont moved to Knoxville, he knew he wanted to make a difference in the life of a child.
“I was a substitute teacher for a long time so when I moved here, Fremont said. “I wasn’t going to be substitute teaching anymore and I thought it would be kind of cool as opposed to working with a room of 25 kids, to be able to help out one.”
Big Brothers Big Sisters was his way to make it happen.
“Marcus is awesome,” Fremont said. “He is a super polite kid. Very respectful. We’ve gotten along ever since the beginning.”
Jean was partnered up with Marcus a little more than a year ago.
“For me, it’s been great ever since the beginning,” he explained.
It’s an organization his station has been giving back to for several years.
“That’s a really cool thing about having reach. You can give back and use those resources for help,” said Joey Tack, 104.5 FM Program Director.
It started with Tack Gives Back, a campaign he started several years ago.
“Our whole mission was in addition to raising money for them, let’s raise awareness so people just have an idea of who they are and what they do,” Tack said.
The mission continues through the employees, and because of donations.
“It’s costly to sustain and keep a match,” Fremont said. “They have to do background checks. Sometimes they provide things to do with your little and that stuff isn’t free.”
It’s a program that begins as a mentorship and ends with a friendship. A friendship that can change the direction of a child’s life forever.
“It’s an investment back into your community,” Fremont said.
Visit the Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Tennessee website for more information.