Meet A Match: Karl & Jordan
October 31, 2022, Katie Huynh
Big Brother Karl and Little Brother Jordan are a match that shows just how special the relationship between a Big and a Little can be. The two were matched when Jordan was nine years old, and six years later, their bond is stronger than ever. From their first days of going to the mall and playing chess, to being selected as a member of the Junior Wolves Dream Team with the Timberwolves, to now 15-year-old Jordan finally beating his Big Brother at chess, Karl and Jordan have shared many memorable experiences together.
It all started when Jordan’s mom, Heidi, enrolled him in Big Brothers Big Sisters youth mentoring program to provide him with a positive, male role model. After a four-month wait, she was so happy to find out they had found a match for Jordan. Karl remembers hoping from their first meeting that he would live up to Heidi and Jordan’s expectations as a Big Brother – little did they know then just how impactful their relationship would become.
The two of them bonded over a love of sports and trying new things together. Jordan shares that his favorite part about being a Little is the new experiences. As the seasons changed and the years went by, Karl and Jordan would change their activities from hiking in the fall, to skiing in the winter, to playing disc golf in the summer. One of Jordan’s favorite memories was when Karl brought him to his workplace at Metro Transit for a tour. He even got to help drive a Light Rail train with Dan, the instructor.
As their relationship lengthened, Karl and Jordan’s trust in each other grew with it. Jordan reflects, “Karl has become a big deal in my life. We talk about the world, and what’s going on with each other. I know he’ll be there for me, and vice versa.” Karl agrees, “The biggest thing I’ve tried to model for Jordan is showing up when I say I will, to show that I care about being present in his life.”
Now that Jordan is older, their conversations have matured too. Jordan shares that he has learned a lot from Karl about managing money and planning for the future, including how to save for a car and pursue a career in culinary arts. Karl adds that Jordan has taught him as well. “Jordan is a kind, generous, and positive young man. He has been a great influence on me. I’ve learned to become more patient, to slow down, and to live in the moment. Whether we’re playing soccer or chess, we’re just enjoying this time together.”
Every match relationship is different, but one thing they all have in common is the importance of quality time. Karl and Jordan’s story demonstrates how mentoring relationships evolve and grow over the years in ways that continue to impact both the Big and the Little. Check out their photos below to follow along with their journey!