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.

March 2016                                                                                          Issue 146
School Year Ending. What about Next Year?
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. There's a lot of information so I try to send this only once a 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. 
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Use Information To Help Constantly Improve  Your Own Program
If you're already a great program,  you want to stay great. If you're like most programs,  you're still working on being great.

The Tutor/Mentor Connection started building a library of resources that anyone could use to build and sustain constantly improving, volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs, in 1994 and took that information to the Internet in 1998. I've continued that work under the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC since 2011.

This blog article points to different sections of the library.  This concept map does the same thing. Safe these links. Refer to them often. Encourage your volunteers, staff, board members and donors to dig into this information regularly. 
A web library is a constantly expanding body of knowledge. While I add new links each week, the sites I  point to are constantly updating their information and also adding links to their resource libraries. Only by on-going visits can any organization begin to harness the power of this resource.
Create Visualizations to Show Your Strategy
Involve youth and volunteers in creating stories that increase your support.

The Tutor/Mentor Connection began using maps in 1993 to show where non-school tutor/mentor programs are most needed, based on indicators such as high poverty, concentrations of poorly performing schools and incidents of violence.  By 1997 we were also using visualizations to communicate the concept of a mentor-rich program that engages volunteers from different backgrounds and provides multi-year support to help youth move through school and into jobs.
Search Google for "tutor mentor" then look at the images. Look at our page on Pinterest. Look at the way images are included in blog articles. Every youth serving organization could be doing the same, with the result that youth are building new skills and learning to be leaders and that new volunteers and donors are beginning to find more reasons to support your efforts. 
Sponsor wanted. When you search Google for the words "tutor mentor" from any location in the US, Tutor/Mentor Institute web sites come up three or more times on the first page. Are their businesses who would pay to put their logo on some of our web sites and help keep this resource freely available to others?
If it's important that a youth have extra adult support...
What are leaders doing to assure that all youth in high poverty areas have the extra support they need?

This graphic is used in this PDF essay and in several blog articles, such as this.  This newsletter is sent monthly as a resource guide and to spark inspiration and ideas that engage more people in on-going efforts to help youth have the non-school supports they need, from birth till work, so that more kids move more safely and successfully through school and into adult roles out of poverty.  
Use these lists to find contact information for non-school tutor, mentor and learning programs in Chicago region.
Chicago Program list -

Map showing locations of Chicago Programs - click here

Facebook pages for Chicago area youth programs - click here

Map showing intermediaries supporting Chicago youth serving organization - click here

Facebook list of intermediaries - click here

Map pointing to other resources to use in finding volunteer opportunities in Chicago, and other cities - click here
Is anyone else maintaining this type of resource library in Chicago, or in  other cities? 
Networking Opportunities in Chicago and beyond
While there will not be a Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference this spring, there are many other places to connect in coming months.

Here are a few events I'm aware of:

Volunteer Recognition Week is April 10-16, 2016.  Find info here.
Visit the Facebook pages of many Chicago tutor and mentor orgs, like Cluster, Tutoring Chicago, WITS, ChicagoLights, etc. and see how they profile students/volunteers regularly. Use this list to find pages of other youth serving programs and borrow ideas to use in your own organization.
On the Road to Literacy Conference, Sat., April 9 at UIC Center for Literacy - see details
Illinois After School Network Conference, May 6-7, 2016, Springfield, IL. see details
Dare to Soar 2016 "Nonprofit Leader's Mentorship / Business Conference" to be held at Englewood Blue, 815 W 63rd St, Fl 4th, Chicago, Illinois 60621 - see details
National Conference on Volunteering & Service, June 27-29 in Detroit. See details
Illinois Conference on Volunteer Administration (ICOVA), August 10, 2016, see details 
View events on Thrive Chicago calendar. Add your own. see calendar
Events hosted by Intermediaries in Chicago. To be fully aware of networking and learning events in Chicago, you need to visit web sites of organizations shown on this map to stay informed of other networking events available to youth organizations and supporters in Chicago region. 
Connect with Tutor/Mentor Institute, and each other on social media. Click the icons at the bottom of this page to connect with T/MI.  

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

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