Edition: December 2013
Issue No. 126

Instructions for removing yourself from this list are included at the bottom of this email.
NOTE: throughout this newsletter we use a Tiny URL to shorten long web site addresses so the links do not break.

Issues of the month

* Celebrate Mentoring - January National Mentoring Month
* Help provide HOPE for the holidays to area tutor/mentor programs.
* Collaboration Goals for 2014
* Idea Library - support for leaders and volunteers
* President's Message - With So Many Causes, Finding Circle of Support

issue 01
National Mentoring Month Activities - Engage Your Youth and Volunteers

Image created by Tutor/Mentor Connection

Mark these Dates on your Planning Calendar
  • January 13, 2014:  MENTOR Releases National Mentoring Report

  • January 9, 2014: "I Am a Mentor Day"

  • January 16, 2014:  "Thank Your Mentor Day"
  • January 20, 2014:  Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service
  • January 30-31: 2014:  National Mentoring Summit in Washington, DC. Connect on Twitter using #2014NMS

Visit http://www.nationalmentoringmonth.org/ for additional information.

While these events focus specifically on volunteer-based mentoring, every organization who engages youth in volunteer based TUTORING and mentoring can engage their youth and volunteers in similar activities on the same dates. 

Help Make Tutor/Mentor Programs Available in your city

I've put this graphic on my blogs and web sites, with a link to the list of Chicago area tutoring and/or mentoring programs that I host on the site.
I encourage others to create a similar graphic, or use this one, to encourage people you know to seek out one or more programs that you can support with a holiday donation. See story at http://tutormentor.blogspot.com/2013/11/anyone-can-take-this-role-can-you.html

Image created by Tutor/Mentor Connection

Below are some on-line portals where volunteers are encouraged to seek out volunteer opportunities. We'd like to motivate donors to use these places, too.
 Do you have your organization listed in all of these sites?

* MENTOR resources and referral service - http://www.mentoring.org/program_resources  
* ServeIllinois -    http://www.serve.illinois.gov/

* Volunteer Match - http://www.volunteermatch.org
* Additional on-line volunteer search web sites


In the Chicago region, use the Map-Based Tutor/Mentor Program Locator and Links library to help locate programs in specific zip codes. Our aim is to help programs grow and thrive in all parts of the region where they are needed.

* Chicago Program Links - http://tinyurl.com/ChiTM-Program-Links
* Chicago Map-Based Tutor/Mentor Program Locator - http://www.tutormentorprogramlocator.net

issue 02
Collaboration Goals for 2014 - Shared Efforts to Build Capacity

Image created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC


If a city has a directory listing most of the non-school, volunteer based tutor/mentor programs, as we do for Chicago, anyone can organize events at key times in the year which build visibility and draw volunteers and donors to the web sites of every organization.

The graphic above illustrates that if high profile leaders talk about the benefits of tutoring/mentoring at key times every year, they can help mobilize the volunteers and donors needed at every program in a city.  Below are some web sites to visit that might stimulate your thinking about this.

Collaboration Goals -

Year-Round Strategy -


Shoppers Guide - what should be shown on your web site - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-ShoppersGuide

Role talent volunteers can take in helping mentor-rich programs reach youth in more places - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-VirtualCorpOffice


Strategy visualizations done by interns. Youth in many programs and schools could do these. http://www.tutormentorconference.org/InternsVideos2013.htm


The next Chicago Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference will be held on May 19, 2014. Visit the web site to read about past conferences and find a way to be involved in 2014.  Http://www.tutormentorconference.org


issue 03
If It Takes A Village to Raise Kids, Where do Leaders get Ideas?


Image created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC

This graphic is one I created to illustrate that volunteers, donors and leaders from many parts of a community need to be strategically involved in helping non-school learning programs be available to youth in every neighborhood where they are needed. Furthermore, they need to provide on-going resources so each program stays connected to youth for multiple years and is constantly improving their impact by learning from their own work, and learning from others.


The Tutor/Mentor Connection has created an extensive web library over the past 15 years. In this Village Concept Map, each node has a few links to sections of the web site that can be a starting point for building understanding and involvement from people in each community. 


Image created by Tutor/Mentor Connection

Think of volunteer involvement as a service-learning loop. As volunteers connect with kids, they learn why they are needed, and ways to help tutor/mentor programs offer their services.

This graphic is an animation created by an intern working with Tutor/Mentor Connection in Chicago. It illustrates the growth of a volunteer as they participate in a tutor/mentor program.www.tutormentorexchange.net/images/flash/rebuild_real.swf . Youth in many programs could be creating presentations like this, as part of their own learning and as part of leadership efforts. If you're doing work like this consider sharing it in one of the Chicago tutor/mentor conferences, or in an on-line forum.

As you provide information to your volunteers and supporters, here are on-line resources that you can use:

* Research on education, drop out crisis, social capital -  http://tinyurl.com/TMI-ResearchLinks
* Fund Raising - Understanding Challenges -  http://tinyurl.com/TMI-Library-FundingIssues 
* Blogs on learning, MOOCs, Fund Raising -  http://tinyurl.com/TMI-Library-Blog-list
* Collaboration, innovation, visualization, mapping -  http://tinyurl.com/TMI-ProcessImp-Collaboration
* Mentoring, tutoring beyond Chicago -   http://tinyurl.com/TMI-Library-Mentoring 
* Training resources for tutors, mentors - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-MentorTraining   
* Process improvement, innovation, creativity articles -


president's message

Has anyone figured out a way to make this work? And how to pay for it?

by Daniel F. Bassill


See more visualizations
like this at


Image created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC



Every day media stories remind us of tremendous suffering and environmental risks that exists in our world.

While I focus every day on what it takes to make constantly improving non-school tutoring, mentoring programs available in high poverty neighborhoods, I'm realistic in understanding that most people in the Chicago region and the world are focused on other issues that are equally important to them.  Sometimes when I think about how difficult it is to raise awareness, and recruit volunteers and donors for a single tutor/mentor program, let alone for more than 200 different programs in a huge metropolitan region like Chicago, I just want to give up. This is too big a challenge, an impossible task.

Yet if I don't try, who else will take this role?

Better yet, if I don't let people know that I exist and what I'm trying to do, how can others who also focus on the same goals, find me? 

Thank you! You read to the bottom of the page.  If you do this every month you are truly dedicated.  I'd like to hear from you. Email me at tutormentor2@earthlink.net or join one of the forums I've pointed to. 

If you can provide dollars, talent, or both, to support the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC please visit this page to learn more.




May all of you enjoy a Happy and Healthy Holiday.  Good luck to everyone as they launch a new year of tutoring and mentoring. 

Daniel F. Bassill, D.H.L

Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC
and Tutor/Mentor Connection

Read the blogs at :

Connect in these locations:
on Twitter - http://twitter.com/tutormentorteam

* Linked in group on volunteering - http://tinyurl.com/TMC-LinkedIn-Volunteering
* Tutor/Mentor Institute on Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/TutorMentorInstitute
* Tutor/Mentor Connection forum at http://tutormentorconnection.ning.com
* On Slide Share - http://www.slideshare.net/tutormentor
* On Scribd.com - http://www.scribd.com/daniel-f-bassill-7291
* On Pinterest - http://pinterest.com/tutormentor/

Read past newsletters