Use the ideas and resources shared monthly to help youth in your zip code have opportunities to participate in well-organized, mentor-rich, non-school programs.

August 2016 - Issue 150
Helping Strong Tutor/Mentor Programs Grow in More Places of Chicago and other Cities,
The ideas shared in this monthly newsletter can be used by youth organization leaders, resource providers, political leaders, universities, volunteers and youth to help mentor-rich programs thrive in all of the neighborhoods where they are most needed.

While I try to send this only once a month, I write blog articles weekly. In the sections below I post links to a few of the articles published in the past month.  Spend a little time each week reading the articles and following the links. Use in group discussions with people who are concerned about the same issues. Create a blog like this sharing your own ideas.
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Now that you have recruited youth and volunteers, how can you help them build strong relationships.
Point volunteers and youth to resources in Tutor/Mentor Library.

Across the country volunteer-based tutoring and mentoring programs are busy recruiting volunteers and youth. Over the next few weeks every program will be going through screening, orientation, training and matching processes, which hopefully will result in volunteers and youth meeting together by the end of September.
For those programs who have a large percent of volunteers from last year repeating for another year, some matches may already be meeting, which is great since school has already started in some places.
When I led a tutor/mentor program in Chicago (1975-2011) my goal was to create a "learning" culture, where volunteers and youth were proactive in seeking information from my web library that they could use throughout the year. Before the Internet, our newsletters pointed people to printed handouts and books that we made available at our tutor/mentor center in Chicago.
Below I've listed a few sections of the web library that programs and volunteers may find valuable over the next two months.  Here's a blog article I wrote in January, showing all of the sections of the web library. The links below are included in that article. 
If you know of great resources that you'd like to share and have me add to the web library, just email the link to me using the email shown below.
Or, join one of the groups I host and post your ideas directly.

Facebook -
LinkedIn group focused on volunteering -  click here
Twitter - @tutormentorteam
Tutor/Mentor Connection on Ning - click here

Recommended reading:
* Want to make a difference? Spend time in deeper learning - click here
* Who should be looking at Tutor/Mentor blog? - click here
* Annotation - a new learning and collaboration tool - click here
As you read some of my articles, consider how you could share your own expertise, using your own blog.   
What Ways Are You Telling Your Story? What Places?
Are you looking at blogs and web pages of other programs, to get ideas for your own program?
I included this information in my July 2016 newsletter, but am repeating it since this is so important.
One way I stay informed is by looking at what Chicago area tutoring and/or mentoring programs are putting on Twitter and/or Facebook, as well as what they are putting on their web sites. 

Connecting with other programs on Facebook.  The easiest way to learn what other programs are doing is to look at their Facebook pages. The way I've done this is to look at web sites of programs I maintain on this list.  I find their Facebook link, and then visit their page and click on the "like" button. I've created a list of programs on Facebook, so this would be easier for others to do.

Then, on a regular basis, daily or weekly, I just click on the Pages Feed button, on the left side of my home page, and scroll down through the listings to see what's being posted. 

Several Chicago youth organizations are very consistent, and creative, in sharing photo stories on a regular basis. Spend time looking at these and add the ideas to your own communications strategy.
Then, go a step further. Create graphics that feature some of these programs and share them in social media, to build greater visibility for the entire sector of youth tutor/mentor programs in your city.
You can also follow what Chicago and national youth serving organizations are sharing on Twitter, by clicking on my TMPrograms list, then scrolling through what's being posted.  Unfortunately, only a few Chicago programs are active on Twitter. My list includes organizations from around the country, so don't limit where you look to find ideas for your own organization.
Looking at program web sites (here's my list) provides the most information about individual youth serving organizations  in the Chicago region. I organize my list by sections of the city and suburbs to make it easier for parents, volunteers, donors, etc. to find programs near where they live or work.  Many of the web sites are full of information. Some don't have as much.

I also point to other youth programs around the country. See the list
My vision has been that a program's web site should serve as its grant proposal, and that donors and volunteers should be educated to seek out programs in different parts of the city and suburbs, in response to negative news or other reminders.  I created this SHOPPER GUIDE PDF to show a list of things that I feel should be included on a web site, to fully inform site visitors. Very few organizations actually include most of this information on their web sites.

One opportunity that most programs miss, is using blogs to share their vision, successes and challenges with each other and with the public. If you browse articles I've posted since 2005, I'm pretty open about what I'm trying to influence.  If you look at this AllStars Project blog, you'll see a clear statement of some of the challenges non-school youth development programs face.   I would like to be able expand this list of blogs, which I've been building for the past 10 years, where leaders of tutoring and mentoring programs are sharing their own ideas in a similar way. Send me your blog address and I'll add it to the list.
Recommended Reading:
* Some focus on the act of tutoring or mentoring. I focus on the infrastructure. click here

* Turn your Tutor/Mentor organization into a "learning" organization - click here
* Building personal learning habits - click here
* Does your Tutor/Mentor Program have a written  plan? - click here
* Addressing funding challenges - click here
As we enter the second half of 2016 the conditions that motivated myself and a small group of volunteers to create the T/MC in 1993 still exist. Good luck to all leaders of youth tutor, mentor and learning programs as you move through the coming school year .

Resources to Help You Locate Tutor and/or Mentor Programs in the Chicago region.
Use these lists to find contact information for non-school tutor, mentor and learning programs in Chicago region. 
Chicago Non-School Tutor and/or Mentor Program list -

Map showing locations of Chicago T/M Programs - click here

Facebook pages for Chicago area youth and T/M programs - click here 

Map showing intermediaries supporting Chicago youth serving organization - click here

Facebook list of Chicago intermediaries -click here

Map pointing to other resources to use in finding volunteer opportunities in Chicago, and other cities - click here

To add, correct or update information email me using the address shown below.
Is anyone else maintaining this type of resource library in Chicago, or in  other cities?  If you're not in Chicago, and have someone maintaining program lists like I do, you can duplicate the same actions and strategies as I'm sharing with people in Chicago.

If you'd like my help to develop your strategy, I'm available.
Recommended reading:
*  Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis. Follow up to Putnam visit in Chicago - click here
* Virtual Corporate Office - Strategy for helping tutor/mentor programs grow in more places - click here
* Mentor Role in Larger Youth Development Strategy - click here

* Understanding where programs are most needed in Chicago, based on poverty data - click here
Since 2000 I've created several dozen illustrated presentations that focus on strategies for building and sustaining a citywide distribution of volunteer-based tutoring, mentoring and learning organizations.  Click here to browse this list.

If you're writer, editor, video producer, and want to help update these, let's connect.

You might be interested in....

Opportunities to engage your students
* Youth Voices/Letters to the Next President 2.0. Involve your students. click here
* Engaging Youth as Environmental Citizens - click here 
* Duplicate work done by Interns working with Tutor/Mentor Connection - view here
Strategies that could be duplicated to support out-of-school-time programs
* CPSuccess - site aggregates stories of good things happening at Chicago Public Schools. click here
* Connected Learning MOOC - online gathering of educators is model for how youth development, tutoring, mentoring leaders might connect - click here
Upcoming conferences & events in Chicago area ....
* Sept. 10, Back to School Jam at Jones College Prep, 700 South State Street, sponsored by Chicago City of Learning - click here for more
* Sept. 16 Chicago Literacy Alliance Second Annual State of Literacy Symposium, at Literacenter - 641 W. Lake Suite 200, Chicago, IL 60661. Click here to register

* Oct. 20. Third Annual Afterschool Growth Conference. To be held at East-West University, 829 S. Wabash Ave. Contact David Cherry  City Leader, All Stars Project of Chicago, or 312-994-3100.
* ILGIVE2016 - Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016 - click here
* Strengthening Chicago Youth - training and events calendar - click here
* Thrive Chicago events calendar - click here
* Chicago and National conferences that repeat annually - click here

Dan Bassill (that's me) is available to discuss any of these ideas with you, or others, via Skype, Google Hangouts or in person if you're in Chicago.

Tutor/Mentor Connection, Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC  
Merchandise Mart PO Box 3303, Chicago, Il 60654 |

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Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, Merchandise Mart PO Box 3303,  Chicago, IL 60654