Good luck and Holiday Best Wishes to every Youth Organization Leader as You Head into the Final Six Weeks of 2015 and into the beginning of 2016.


November 2015                                                                                  Issue: #146
Ending This Year with Momentum for 2016. Ideas for Volunteer-Based Tutor & Mentor Programs and Community Leaders and Resource Providers.

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. 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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#ILGIVE, December FundRaising, January Mentoring Month
Make sure your organization is taking advantage of events intended to help you.

If you're in Illinois, I hope you're planning to take part in the Tuesday, December 1 #ILGIVE fund raising campaign coordinated by the Donors Forum of Chicago. See list of participating organizations and more details.

Still looking for volunteers?  Visit the Illinois Mentoring Partnership site and learn about the Chicago Mayor's Mentoring Challenge and the Illinois Coaches Mentoring Challenge.  

Funding Opportunity: Look at this AT&T Aspire to Connect for Success competition. Opens Nov. 9, 2015

January will again be National Mentoring Month.  Visit this page to find details and events that you can use to draw support to your own organization and others during January 2016. 
Are Volunteers and Donors Looking for Ways to Help You?
What are  your volunteers reading? Where are they learning? Are donors connecting with you in on-line communities?

I used the above graphic in this Logic Model PDF. It is one of many strategy presentations in the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC library.

I started building this library in the 1970s as I was growing my own knowledge about tutoring and mentoring and how to organize and lead a volunteer-based non-school tutor/mentor program.  We had 100 pairs of volunteers and elementary school kids participating weekly in 1975 and I had a full time advertising job. The only way I could effectively support volunteers was to create a learning organization, where each volunteer was drawing from the same library of ideas as I was, and every volunteer was a source of ideas and information.
I've continued to build this library over the past 40 years and it's been available on the Internet since 1994. I point to more than 2000 other web sites, with information leaders can use to build strong programs, and that volunteers and resource providers can use to help strong programs grow. If every youth serving organization created its own "learning culture" then its students would also be spending time on a regular basis drawing from information in the library to support their own efforts as they move through school and into adult lives.

Many of the articles on the Tutor/Mentor Blog point to information in the library. I add to this every week.

Here are some resources I encourage you to invite your volunteers to look at:

Digital Writing Month cMOOC - Learning to write your own blog, or create your own video, to share what you are learning is a critically important strategy. This cMOOC runs through November 2015 and is free to join and participate. See details.

Cities Building Community Wealth report - youth living in high poverty need much more than tutors and mentors to help them grow up. Volunteers can do more to help by learning what the issues are and what the solutions are. Visit the web site.
Independent Sector report: Threads Insights from the Charitable Community.  Click here. The more your volunteers, leaders and donors understand the challenges non profits face, the more likely they will be to help you overcome those challenges.  This report is one of many similar articles in this section of the Tutor/Mentor Library.

Working with Urban Youth: It Takes More than a Mentor. Blog article.
In this article I point to web sites of Bernie Sanders, Robert Reich, Hedrick Smith and Tavis Smiley, who each provide in-depth information that volunteers might use to do more to help the kids they are mentoring and tutoring.

Is your web site providing enough information to motivate volunteers, donors and leaders to support you? Visit this Shopper Guide PDF and consider what types of information you could be sharing on your web site. 

Did You See the Article Showing My Use of Maps?
On October 21 Dawn Turner Trice wrote an article for the Chicago Tribune, about how maps could be used by political leaders as part of violence prevention strategies.

Last week the Chicago Tribune featured the shootings of a 9-year old boy and a 20-year-old aspiring model on the front page. I created a map story, pointing to the neighborhood where these shootings took place, and showing what political districts these shootings were part of.  In that story I also include a link to the Dawn Turner Chicago Tribune article.

I believe that leaders from all sectors need to be involved in helping youth serving and jobs training programs be available in every high poverty neighborhood. Leaders need to use maps, the way Generals use maps, to make sure programs are in all places where they are needed, and to develop supply systems to make sure each program is well supported.  Below are links to a few articles that illustrate this goal:

* No General Goes to War Without a Map - link
* Role of Leaders - link
* Mentor Role in a Larger Strategy - link
Year Round Strategy
Planning Ahead - 2016 Opportunities for Collective Action
Over the next six weeks every non profit will be looking for donors. How Can We Work Together so More Donors are Looking for Tutor/Mentor Programs in Chicago?

During my years leading a volunteer-based tutor/mentor program I realized that if I asked a volunteer help me solve a crisis, or do something that needs to be done right away, I might find someone to help one time, but they would not be willing to help very often.  On the other hand, if I pointed to an activity that was to take place in the future, I could  give them more time, and more flexibility, to get involved. In many cases this led to ownership that resulted in on-going involvement.

This graphic shows four key times each year when our collective voices might result in greater response from volunteers, donors, media and those we need involved in helping us build and sustain strong youth serving organizations.

This video , this animation, and this  pdf describe this year-round strategy and these key events.

Imagine if this strategy had been happening in Chicago every year since I launched the Tutor/Mentor Connection in 1993.   I think there would be more volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs operating in all of the high poverty neighborhoods of Chicago, and many would have stories showing long-term impact on lives of kids and volunteers. 

Now imagine you're in the year 2030. Will poverty, inequality and the distribution of needed, long-term, tutoring, mentoring and learning programs be any different? 

If you embrace and take ownership of these strategies you can change the future .

First Year Since 1994 that No Tutor/Mentor Leadership & Networking Conference Has Been Held In Chicago
Let's connect on-line, or in one-on-one and small group meetings.

I hosted a first Tutor/Mentor Leadership & Networking Conference in May 1994, with workshops presented by people who were leading Chicago area tutor/mentor programs. WITS, Cluster Tutoring Program, 4th Presbyterian Church Tutoring Program, Highsight, and Cabrini-Green Tutoring Program (now Tutoring Chicago) were among 70 people who attended. Many felt it was a success. So we did another in November 1994 and 200 people attended. I've hosted these conferences every six months since then.

Much has changed since 1994, especially the way we communicate and share ideas via the Internet. Many new organizations have entered the space as intermediaries, supported by high level donors and civic leaders. At the same time my own ability to raise funds has been severely reduced, especially since 2011. Attendance in May 2015 was 60 enthusiastic people, but I was not able to find sponsors so again had to pay for some of the costs from my own savings.

Thus, I am not hosting the conference this November. I will try to bring it back in May/June 2016...if I can find sponsors and partners.. 

In the meantime, I'll continue to share ideas via blogs, this newsletter, and on-line forums with a goal of inspiring more people throughout the "village" to adopt some of these ideas in their own strategies. 

Read some of my articles featuring cMOOCs.
I think this offers an exciting way for volunteers, donors, programs, researchers, etc. to connect online.

If you'd like to meet on-line, or face-to-face, for a tour of the on-line resources of the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, please reach out to me via social media or one of the links shown below.

Help Me Continue to Host and Share these Ideas

Visit this page and look at the range of information, ideas and resources made available to Chicago by the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC

Compare this to what other intermediaries offer on their own web sites. Your support is needed to help me continue this work.

Find more resources at:

Tutor/Mentor Connection

Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC

Tutor/Mentor Blog

Merchandise Mart PO Box 3303, Chicago, IL  60654

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