By Gary Roedemeier
Brad and Nikki Cummings met 4 years ago at the Kentucky Center, when they were both involved in theater projects. And this week, they returned to the Center.
They had encouraged their "little brother" to get involved in a Stage One production, and he won a part in the annual holiday play.
All of this has happened; and the match itself, between Nikki and Brad, is still in act one.
The Kentucky Center is where Nikki and Brad Cummings fell in love, in the Bomhard Theater. They are two people with a theatrical past, who are passing along their love story to a little brother.
Volunteering to mentor as a couple was part of the story.
"We love spending time together, Brad and I do. So, we thought it would be a way for us to do something together as a married couple and also be able to share our relationship with a little brother," says Nikki
In April, they were matched with 13-year-old Tyler Chandler, who had expressed some interest in performing arts. In 6 months they have changed Tyler from passive, to active.
Tyler said, "They changed me as a believer, really, so to speak. Because I really didn't think I could ever be an actor, and really never thought it possible."
Brad and Nikki arranged a try-out for Tyler at Stage One, and opened up a world of possibilities for a kid in middle school. He's now part of a holiday production, but beyond that, this couple just wants to be a good example.
"I hope that through our years with Tyler, that he sees, there's true love, that's beyond just the infatuation. That there's love that's real and long-term and this is what it means to be that. So, I think Nikki and I want to be that example," said Brad
And they are that example, every time they meet with Tyler.
"To just go home and tell my mom," says Tyler, "Mom I had such a great time tonight. I can't wait for the next time, and they give me that each and every time I'm with them."
It is a gift that keeps giving; the gift of time, the gift of possibilities.
For more information on how you can become a Big Brother or Big Sister, or a couples match, call 1-877-588-2300.
You can also go to link on the front page of this website, and click on the "as seen on" button and it will link you to Big Brothers and Big Sisters.