Edition: March 2013
Issue No. 117



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

* Helping Strong Youth Programs Grow in More Places
* Help Build Participation in June 7 Tutor/Mentor Conference
* Do you have year-round planning cycle?
* Engage students and volunteers in on-going story-telling.
* President's Message - CEO support needed.


issue 01

What Type of Infrastructure is Needed to Support Youth Mentoring?

When you see an image of a young person and a volunteer how often do you spend time thinking of what it takes for a mentoring organization to be available in the neighborhood where the youth lives, with the staff and facilities that enables a volunteer to connect and stay connected for multiple years?

How many leaders are using graphics and maps to illustrate the need for long-term support of youth programs operating in high poverty neighborhoods throughout the city and suburbs?  How many people who are not directly involved as directors, and staff take a third-party role intended to mobilize support for one or more tutor/mentor programs throughout the city.

If these are ideas that interest you, see more graphics like these at http://pinterest.com/tutormentor/

If these are ideas that you are interested in be part of the Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conferences and join with others in on-line forums.

Save the Date. Next Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference in Chicago will be on Friday, June 7, 2013 at the Metcalfe Federal Building.

The Tutor/Mentor Connection (T/MC) was created in 1993, so we're now entering our 20th year. The first conference was hosted in May 1994. Following conferences have been held every six months since then. This has been a grassroots affair made possible by all speakers volunteering time to share ideas. 


The workshop agenda is beginning to fill. It will be posted by the second week of April. If you'd like to propose a workshop, visit this page to fill out a workshop presenter form: http://www.tutormentorconference.org/present.asp




"Who attends?" has been a constant question. In 2007 an on-line attendee list was created to provide this information. In 2010 we began to produce social network analysis maps.  This winter we've found a way to create maps showing participants from past conferences. This one shows November 1998 when over 200 people attended.



This map shows organizations in Chicago who participated in a conference held more than 15 years ago. Similar maps can be seen on this page. More will be created in the future.  While these show "who attends" a better question would be "who should be attending?"  or "Why are they not attending?"


There are more than 200 youth organization web sites in the Chicago program links section of the Tutor/Mentor Links Library - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-ChiProgramLinks


Many other youth serving organizations are represented in other sections of the library, such as this one - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-Library-Mentoring

All youth serving organizations have an on-going need for the same resources. The conferences are intended to draw people together to share ideas on how to get these resources directly to programs at the lowest possible cost and with the greatest flexibility in how funds are used.


See photos from the November 2012 conference and from past conferences

issue 02


Is Your Planning Focused on August, November and January 2014?


Image created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC


Every year school starts in September and volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs are looking for volunteers.  Every year the year-end holidays and tax decisions encourage more people to look for places to donate money. Every January National Mentoring Month draws attention to the power of mentors in the lives of young people.  Does your organization have teams of people developing strategies that mobilize volunteers and raise money during these time frames. Is this a year round process? Are your volunteers helping you? Are your elected officials helping you? Are you working with similar programs in your community area?


View these essays on planning and collaboration. Adopt them into your strategy. Share your own ideas with peers in on-line forums and conferences such as the Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference held in Chicago.

*  Collaboration goals - http://tinyurl.com/TMC-Collaboration-Scribd-com
*  Planning Calendar . http://tinyurl.com/TMI-Planning-Calendar

Host a workshop at the June or November Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference or connect in on-line forums, Facebook, Linked in, etc. to share your strategies. 



issue 03


Engage Your Students and Volunteers in Story Telling and Capacity Building


This graphic is from an animation I made (click here)  to introduce students to a role they can take in collecting, organizing and sharing information that adults in their community can use to support the growth of needed non-school tutoring, mentoring, jobs, recreation and safety programs in their own neighborhoods.

Image created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC

If you view this page you can see projects done by interns working with Tutor/Mentor Connection in Chicago since 2005. Projects like these could be created by youth in schools and non-school programs in any city. They could be used to draw adults together and to build strategies that draw needed resources into neighborhoods that create and sustain constantly improving, evidence based, tutoring, mentoring and learning programs.

I learned about this animation tool by participating in the Education Technology and Media MOOC that ran from January-March 2013 (see archive at http://www.etmooc.org) . By creating a similar on-line learning event that connects volunteers, students, leaders, donors, etc. from Chicago and other cities, we can share ideas that can be applied in any neighborhood where kids need extra help.
Image created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC

Image created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC

Using maps and on-line directories, such as the Chicago Tutor/Mentor Program Locator we can collect and share information showing all neighborhoods where extra help is needed, and all programs who need volunteers, donors, leaders, technology and ideas to be the best in the world at what they do to help kids become productive adults.

Through our collective efforts and idea sharing we can draw resource providers into our networks and find more ways to build and sustain needed programs in all parts of a city, not just in places with high profile organizations.



president's message

Follow Corporate Strategies the Support Retail Stores in Multiple Locations

by Daniel F. Bassill

This month the Mayor of Chicago is asking local corporations to pledge $50 million to support youth programs in areas of high violence.  On a national level a corporate challenges have been issued to mobilize corporate resources to fight violence. Yet, Chicago has been faced with poverty, poorly performing schools and high levels of violence for many years. Millions of dollars have been spent. What has been achieved?

If you visit the Mayor's web site, or that of corporate leaders, will you find a concept map like below, showing the corporate commitment of people, ideas, technology and dollars to help youth in every poverty neighborhood move through school and into jobs and careers?  Do you see a program of public recognition that rewards those who adopt and lead such a strategy? Do you see this in any of the big cities around the country?

   Images created by Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC

We have many ways to know where tutor/mentor programs are needed, and to find contact information for existing programs. The Tutor/Mentor Program Locator is just one resource available to you. It uses maps to show where existing programs are located in the city and what neighborhoods are underserved.

This information can be used by any type of group in on-going communications and leadership strategies intended to mobilize volunteers, donors, talent and other resources needed at every program on an on-going basis. The above graphic illustrates how high profile leaders can support this strategy if they talk about what the needs of programs are at different times each year. Using this communities can plan August-September volunteer-mobilization campaigns as school starts and November-December recognition and fund raising events as we near the year-end holidays. Repeating these actions every year, and borrowing new ideas from others, enable the impact of your events to grow, generating growing resources to support tutoring/mentoring programs in any community.

See articles related to this topic:

Role of leaders - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-RoleOfLeaders  

Community Information Collection - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-Information-Collection

Tipping points - http://tinyurl.com/TMI-TippingPoint

I've built a library with research articles and blogs where writers show the cost of poverty, the skills gaps, the drop out crisis, etc. Instead of creating this research myself my goal has been to re-circulate articles written by people with far more skills and research talent than myself.   Motivating more people to read these articles and become personally involved in providing resources to support solutions is a goal that young people and adults from many sectors can adopt and lead. You can find this library at  http://tinyurl.com/TMC-Library

Are you already having this conversation? Where? If you post in spaces I host you can attract the people in my network to your space. I can do the same.  Share  your ideas with me on Twitter @tutormentorteam or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TutorMentorInstitute


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. 

Good luck to everyone as they launch a new school 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