Buddies of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Rotorua have been bonding while letting their creative juices flow.

Five mentoring matches from the programme are taking part in a six-week mosaic course with Lani Eyles at The Arts Village. This week was their fourth session.

Many of the mosaics are of emotikis, though the children and mentors could do any design they liked.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Rotorua co-ordinator Darryl Parker says this is the first time they had taken part in a course like this.


He says it allows children and mentors to get together with others in the programme.

"Part of our kaupapa is to introduce them and familiarise them with local facilities, and we want to expose them to arts and creativity as part of our kaupapa as well, and this is an opportunity to do that."

Darryl says it has been interesting to see how they interact and it has been neat seeing everyone talk more as the course has gone on.

Willow, 9, says she has enjoyed learning and doing different colours on her emotiki.

Her emotiki has different details like wings and a halo, she says.

Ruby, 11, says she has liked being able to do something different and meeting new people.

"It's been fun to choose our own design and colours, and at the end we can take them home."

Chardonay, 10, says she has enjoyed starting the tiling on her mosaic.

Mentor Denys Munro says she gets a lot out of being part of Big Brothers Big Sisters Rotorua, including seeing the fun her buddy gets out of it, finding different things for them to do, and spending time and chatting with her buddy.

Mentor Pipiana Whiston says it has been nice to sit around the table at the mosaics course and get to know everyone better.

Pipiana says she got involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters because she wanted to do something meaningful in the community - "it's not your normal donation to things".

"It's nice to be part of something that is hopefully helping others in the community."