Big Brothers Big Sisters

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Missoula has announced it is closing on May 31 after nearly 50 years.

The nonprofit organization pairs mentors with children ages 6-14. On Tuesday, the organization sent out emails and called mentors in the community informing them that all of the "matches" between mentors and kids will end on May 31 and the organization will cease operations.

On March 22, the organization posted a Facebook message hinting at financial trouble.

"Our organization is going through a critical time and needs your help," the post read. "Over the last two years, our annual state, federal, and private grants have been cut. We have done everything in our power to deal with the loss of a third of our budget, but we are still coming up short. Our goal is to raise one year's operating expenses so that we can fully develop and adapt our new funding model."

Kathy Dahood, the president of the organization's board of directors, did not immediately return a call for comment.

It's not clear what will happen with the organization's June 7 "Big Event" fundraiser at the Barn on Mullan Road.

According to its website, Big Brothers was established in Missoula in 1970. Big Sisters was added in 1975. 

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