Nathan (Skip) Luce doesn’t have an office. As coordinator of Big Brothers Big Sisters on Martha’s Vineyard, he prefers to keep his boots on the ground in coordinating with prospective Littles and interviewing prospective Bigs.

Last week Mr. Luce sat at one of his many informal workplaces, a public bench in downtown Vineyard Haven, to discuss the launch of the newest Big Brothers Big Sisters initiative — the Waiting Little of the Month Campaign.

“Big Brothers Big Sisters universally has pretty high approval,” he said. “Everyone thinks it is great. And many people have thought about joining. But for most, it remains abstract. This new initiative is about putting a face to the program, and letting people know that it isn’t just abstract.”

The campaign, Mr. Luce explained, circulates a newsletter that highlights one individual child who, for one reason or another, hasn’t been matched with a big brother or sister.

Gabe likes bowling, fishing and watching The Simpsons. — Courtesy Big Brothers Big Sisters

“I am excited about it, but I was curious about how it would fly because it’s such a small Island community. Oftentimes we keep the kids waiting in the program confidential, because you never really know what circumstances someone has,” he said.

Currently, the program is highlighting Gabe, a nine year-old boy from Chilmark who has been waiting for a big brother for almost a year. Gabe lives with his mom, who said she would like an additional positive adult influence in his life to help him explore his interests which range from bowling and fishing to watching the Simpsons.

Each child is different.

“Sometimes it’s a boy who is living with a single mom, who might be overstretched working a couple of jobs,” Mr Luce said. “She might be a great single mom, but [might] want to have a paternal figure in their life to do the kind of things their mom might not have time to do.”

He said three years ago he was on the fence about joining the program.

“Luckily, I had one friend who told me I should definitely join. He pushed me from being on the fence. That’s what we are hoping this campaign will do. Sometimes all it takes is a little push to let people know how great the program is.”

Now Mr. Luce is the full-time on-Island coordinator of the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cape Cod and the Islands. He has had the same Little for all three years, he said, and has embedded himself in the community involved with the program.

Since he became the Island coordinator, the program has been able to make significant progress in helping children find a role model and a friend. In the past three years the matches increased from six each year to 12, Mr. Luce said.

There are currently 30 matched Bigs and Littles on the Vineyard. But Mr. Luce said there are also 14 other boys and one girl, in addition to Gabe, who are waiting to be matched with a Big.

“The reason that there are more boys waiting than girls is that boys tend to be referred at a higher rate than girls. And women volunteer about four times more often than men do,” Mr. Luce said. “Obviously, we love it when women volunteer. But the constant need is finding more guys to volunteer. And we’re making strides with that.”

He referenced a recent initiative, Bigs in Blue, which aims to connect uniformed officials with boys waiting for a big brother. There are currently two police officers on the Island who are active Bigs.

“The goal of the program is to have someone signed up for at least a year, because that is the point at which you start seeing a real positive change in the kids life,” Mr. Luce said. “And you really do. Oftentimes, like with me, people stay on a lot longer. And some people just end up as friends.”