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"Is Chicago Helpless?" Chicago Tribune editorial, 4/22/14 
Is volunteer based tutoring and mentoring part of the solution?
In This Issue
Follow up to violence
May Tutor/Mentor Conference
Planning ahead
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Workshop Presenters* Scheduled for  
May 19 Tutor/ 
Mentor Conference 
(updated since March newsletter) 


Bob Boone and Mark Henry Larson, Glencoe Study Center, Workshop topic THE STORY WITHIN: Using Questions to Unleash Creativity

Bishop Steve Braxton, Founder, Marketplace Ministries, Inc. Workshop Topic: Stopping The Violence

Eric Davis and Students from  GCE Lab School, will host noon keynote. Topic: Purpose Based Learning. Read Eric's blog.

Charlene Doland, academic coach at the suburban learning group Meliora. Workshop topic: Using Project-Based Learning

Kelly Fair, Polished Pebbles Girls Mentoring Program 
Workshop topic:  Blogging to Promote and Expand Mentoring

Dr. Betty Allen-Green,  Chicago Lawndale Amichi Mentoring Program and Rev. Mitchell Sholar,  City Harvest Headstart Outreach Ministry 
Workshop topic: Mentor to Greatness

Guillermo Guitierrez, and Fernando Moreno, BUILD, INC. Workshop topic: Mentoring Urban Youth

Hannah Holtgeerts,  The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.
Workshop Topic:  Communication: Youth, Conflict & the Media

Kristen Strobbe and Christine Driskill, Working in the Schools
Workshop Topic:  Best Practices in Program Delivery and Evaluation

Deborah Lukovich,  Read blog to learn about low-cost seminars 
Workshop Topic: Attracting Donors and Volunteers

Dr. Jennifer Maddrell, Designers for Learning
Workshop topic: Attracting Service-Learners to Support your Organization

Alison Mroczkowski, Adina C.  Cooper, Claudio Rivera, graduate students in the Clinical-Community Psychology program at DePaul University. Workshop topic: Evaluation of school-based mentoring programs for underserved youth

Cheryl Howard-Neal, Illinois Mentoring Partnership
Workshop topic: Using "Elements of Effective Practice" Checklist in program development

Yasmin Rodriguez and Clair Unger, ProjectYES! Topic: Service Planning: How to. 
Lauren Smith,
Unit 4 School District - 2007-2014, Champaign-Urbana
Workshop topic: Tweaking afterschool programs until they work

Frank Walker and Jeff Green, Mars Hill Baptist Church Mentoring Program
Workshop Topic: How to be Radical, Relevant and Relate to Urban Christian Youth through Mentoring(101)

Rev. T.W. from TW's Ministry 
Workshop topic:  CPS {Community - Parent - Student} After School Program

See complete speaker list on conference web site.

* workshop presenters subject to change without notice









Use Tutor/Mentor Connection on-line library. 
While you can use a search engine like Google and find information to help you build and sustain a volunteer-based tutor/mentor program, you can also use the T/MC library.

The library has aggregated and categorized more than 2000 links to information leaders, volunteers and donors can use to build a collective understanding of where and why tutor/mentor programs are needed, as well as ways to support them more consistently for a longer period of years.   

Many of these links focus on Chicago. If you're collecting similar information, focused on a different city, please share the link to your library and I'll add it.  If you'd like to submit a link to the library just register, log in, and use the "Add a New Link" feature to suggest a link. These are moderated and if approved, your link will be added to the site.

Information Categories in Library



Collaboration, Innovation & Process Improvement

Fund Raising and Philanthropy

Volunteer Recruitment portals and resources

Blogs by leading thinkers, consultants, tutor/mentor programs, etc.

Homework Help

Chicago area youth program links

Programs & Networks in other cities

Volunteer Training. Conferences

Law, Poverty, Prevention
Technology resources

Technology and "cool tech tools"  

Link to


There are many additional categories in the library. Spend some time browsing the sections and bookmark those you'd like to visit again. 


The ideas shared in this monthly newsletter can be used by resource providers, political leaders, non profit leaders, volunteers and youth to help mentor-rich programs thrive in all of the neighborhoods where they are most needed.

If the newsletter does not format correctly in your email, or if you want to see this newsletter graphics and maps click this link:   


Share this with others who want to help youth in your city. 


Easter Weekend Shootings in Chicago. What can be done?
This is not the front page from this week's Chicago SunTimes.  It's from October 1992.

However, in this week's Chicago media similar calls for involvement are featured on the front page and editorial pages. 


In the Tribune's editorial the headline is "Is Chicago Helpless?" I say no, then "but..."   


Unless we find ways to keep this story in front of resource providers and policy makers on a daily basis, we won't build enough involvement, or attract the consistent resources needed, to provide youth support and college and career readiness programs in every neighborhood with high rates of poverty, violence and poorly performing schools.


I think youth can take a role in communicating this message to adults who should be doing more and I hope you'll seek me out at the next Tutor/Mentor Conference  (or connect with me on social media) to talk of ways to get youth from your neighborhood involved in this effort. 

See blog article that I wrote on this topic. 

Connecting, Sharing Learning with Others

Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, in partnership with
Becoming We the People and will be hosting a 41st Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference on May 19, 2014 at the Metcalfe Federal Building in Chicago.

We have a great slate of speakers planning to host workshops in May. See the full list at 

See conference agenda at

Registration is open. If you are a workshop presenter, or plan to attend. Register and add your name to the on-line attendee list.


While we are able to draw together a small group for the Tutor/Mentor Conferences others are also drawing people together and focusing on the same issues. 
However, are they using their events to draw resource providers directly to youth tutor/mentor programs in all parts of the community? That's part of the goal of the spring and fall Tutor/Mentor Conference in Chicago.   


The graphic below is a map showing intermediaries in Illinois who focus on the well-being of youth. Click on any of the links and go to their web sites and get involved in what they are doing.   Just two times a year I've been trying to motivate leaders from these groups to join with me and others involved in volunteer-based tutoring and/or mentoring, by participating in the conferences I've hosted since 1994. 


Chicago networks2013

If you are part of any of these groups, please try to attend the conference. Please use your social media to point others to the conference....and to the information on our web sites that show people where and ways to get involved supporting the growth of youth tutoring, mentoring, arts, college and career programs in every part of the city.


Through this newsletter and several web sites I share information that others can use to stimulate on-going learning and actions that dramatically increase the flow of needed resources directly to all of the organizations in Chicago and other cities working to help youth move from birth to work and adult roles.


Through the May and November Tutor/Mentor Conferences, and on-line forums, we create opportunities for people from this network to gather, share ideas and work to generate greater public attention and support for tutor/mentor programs in every part of the city and suburbs. 


This article talks about ways to make this library of information available to youth, volunteers and supporters  - click here 


Visit the Tutor/Mentor  Institute Video Channel  to see more ways to use this information. 


What does it take to build and sustain a "great" tutor/mentor program?




In this section of the Tutor/Mentor Institute library I host pdf essays showing steps to start a program, operating procedures, and an annual planning calendar.


This graphic is from one essay that suggests a culture within an organization that enables it to grow to be great, then stay great over many years.


These are just some of the ideas I share based on more than 40 years involvement with volunteer based tutor/mentor programs...and 17 years creating retail advertising for the Montgomery Ward Corporation.  The ideas focus on ways to build and sustain great programs, and ways to help make great programs available in every high poverty neighborhood of a city.  This article encourages teams from corporations to provide support for program growth, in similar ways that corporate office teams support multiple store growth.  


Most programs cannot do this without more  consistent help from resource providers.


This article talks about the need to influence what resource providers do to support social purpose organizations while we also influence what programs do to have great impact.

These ideas apply to any city where there are high concentrations of poverty, not just Chicago. I hope you'll take a look and share them with others in your network.

Do you write articles with visualizations like these? Please share your link with me by connecting on Twitter @tutormentorteam.


Statewide Afterschool Coalition Conference, May 2-3 in Springfield, Il


Giving With Purpose MOOC, continuing:
Learn effective philanthropy strategies and nominate your favorite

charity for a grant. Learn more

Summer Youth Programs at Illinois Institute of Technology  


National Conference on Volunteering and Service, June 16-18, 2014 - learn more 


Making Learning Connected MOOC, June 13 - Aug 1, 2014. Learn more

Illinois Conference on Volunteer Administration
, August 14 in Chicago. Learn more

You can share your own announcements by connecting with me on social media, or by adding a link to the web library at  



President's Message.  



Why Does Nothing Seem to Change?  



At the start of this newsletter,  I posted a copy of the front page from an October 1992 Chicago SunTimes article. This story above is also not from last week's paper. It is from 1996.  Yet, it could have been last week's feature story in the local media of any city in the country.  

I've been creating #mapstories since 1993 in an effort to draw more attention and resources to tutor/mentor programs in the Chicago region.  You can see some from the 1990s  in this album.  You can see stories from 2008-2011 in this gallery.  


These map-stories show where a tragedy, like a shooting,  occurred, and intend to mobilize volunteers and donors to support the growth of mentor-rich youth programs in that neighborhood.  


They aim to work like retail advertising that draws customers to stores every day.   


I'm just one person. Until hundreds, or even thousands, of people are creating map stories drawing attention, and resources, to places where help is needed, too few people will hear the call and too few will respond.


net growthIt will take many years to get enough people involved to reduce the root causes of many social problems in big cities.  It will take many more years to innovate ways to bring more hope and opportunity to neighborhoods with high rates of poverty, poorly performing schools and street violence. 


If we don't trying to mobilize people to change the future, someone will be showing map stories like this in 20 or 40 years. Nothing will have changed. 


While we can meet on-line at any time to talk about these ideas, the Tutor/Mentor Conference in Chicago May and November is a chance to meet with me and others who are involved in this work, and to share your own ideas. 


Conference sponsor donations now eligible for tax deduction. Read about Becoming We the People taking role of fiscal agent for tutor/mentor conference.  

Please contact me if you'd like to help.

Thank you for reading.     





Daniel F. Bassill 

Daniel Bassill
Tutor/Mentor Connection
Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC 




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