Home 2023 Tutor/Mentor Newsletters June 2023 T/M eNews
June 2023 T/M eNews

June 2023 - Issue 222

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What is the level of poverty in your city?

This month's newsletter is going to focus on poverty research and ways volunteers in organized tutor/mentor programs can use this information to change conditions and do more to help K-12 youth move safely through school and into adult lives.

The ideas and resources shared in this monthly newsletter point to a library of resources that can be used by anyone, in Chicago, or around the world, to help mentor-rich youth programs thrive in all of the neighborhoods where they are most needed.


Encourage others in your city to find and use these resources!

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Join the conversation. "How can we end poverty in America?"

In early May I watched a presentation hosted by the Urban Institute, featuring Matt Desmond, author of a new book titled "Poverty in America". I provided links to the webinar, and to Matt Desmond's website, along with other articles on this topic, in this blog article.


One of the solutions was that "more people need to get involved" reading and sharing the research, so a growing movement of people, in Chicago and other cities and states, will do more to reduce the systems that have led to inequality and poverty in America.


Here's a link to Matt Desmond's End Poverty USA website page with data showing how each state compares in the fight against poverty. click here


Use other resources to understand levels of poverty, health disparities, education attainment and opportunity.

Data maps provide information in a visual way, making it easier to look at indicators for a small part of a city or state, or the entire city or state. This concept map points to many of the websites that I point to in the Tutor/Mentor library. Use them to build your understanding of where people need more help, and then to create stories that mobilize that help.


I've often asked "Who is teaching youth and adults to make sense of this data, and to share it in stories that get other people involved?" In a recent forum I was introduced to the New American History website. This page titled "Mapping Inequality: Redlining in New Deal America," shows lesson plans that can be used in school and non-school programs throughout the country. Take a look.

Why Volunteer-Based Tutor/Mentor Programs are Important

In order to reduce poverty, we first need to understand it, and empathize, so we're willing to do more with our time, talent, dollars and votes to change public and private practices and beliefs that have contributed to the levels of poverty and inequality that exist in America today.


If you've led a volunteer-based tutor/mentor program for multiple years, or volunteered for multiple years, you know the many different benefits these programs offer, to young people and adults. If your program operates in a big city like Chicago, with huge areas of concentrated poverty, you also know how difficult it is for one volunteer, or a single program, to reduce the many barriers caused by systemic racism and long-term government policies.


Over many years I've seen how some volunteers who have been well-supported by the programs they are part of, begin to do more to help the kids they work with, and the programs they are part of. Some may even become politically involved.


Why can't that be happening more frequently?


What if the poverty research that I point to above were part of the library of every volunteer-based organization and that efforts to keep volunteers involved, led to more taking greater roles?


Explore this graphic in this blog article.


Then read this "Mentor Role in a Larger Strategy" article.

As you do your planning, think of this formula.

I led a volunteer-based tutor/mentor program in Chicago for 35 years. For the first 15 years I was a volunteer with a full-time advertising job in the headquarters of a big retail store corporation. The program I led had 100 pairs of elementary school kids and workplace volunteers in 1975 when I became its leader and grew to over 300 pairs by 1990, with volunteers coming from more than 100 companies in the Chicago region. That program still serves Chicago, under the name of Tutoring Chicago.


I had to learn to recruit volunteers who would help with leading the program and doing all the work involved. Over time this became the formula - R&D+F&L. This means Recruit and Delegate. Follow-up and Lead. View this blog article to learn more about this strategy.


In the article I pointed to above, I share pages from the annual yearbook that I created each year from 1975 to 1999. One set of pages shows the tutoring program volunteer committee in 1975, with 13 people. The second is from the 1991-92 program, with a committee of more than 60 volunteers! There's an important lesson from these photos.


Great programs don't start great, they grow great over a period of many years of constant innovation and improvement. This is a lesson we need to share with donors so that more will provide the constant flow of dollars needed to build and sustain constantly improving programs.


Imagine the potential impact of this volunteer growth strategy in hundreds of volunteer-based organizations serving youth and families throughout the country. Imagine connecting these people to each other in a movement intended to reduce barriers to learning and opportunity.


What's you strategy for growing your program and getting volunteers involved? Do you have a blog where you share the work you do to make your program great? Please share it with me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and/or Mastodon.


The graphic below shows just a few of the most recent additions to the tutor/mentor library - click here to view links.

Recent Tutor/Mentor Blog articles:


Learn about Artificial Intelligence tools you can use in your school or non-school program. Follow the links in these #ETMOOC blog articles and in these ChatGPT articles.


Memorial Day articles on Tutor/Mentor blog - click here


Chicago school closings. 2011 and now. click here


Building and Sustaining Mentor-Rich Supporty Systems for K-12 Youth - click here


Building Attention for Youth Tutor/Mentor Programs - click here


Planning. How do we know when we are "there"? - click here



Bookmark these Tutor/Mentor Resources


* Resource Library - click here


* Strategy PDFs by Tutor/Mentor - click here


* Concept Map library - click here


* Work done by interns - click here


* Political Action resources - click here


* Featured collections on Wakeletclick here


* Tutor/Mentor Institute Videos - click here


* About T/MI articles on blog - click here


* History of T/MC - T/MI articles - click here


* Chicago Youth Serving Organizations in Intermediary Roles - click here to view a concept map showing many organizations working to help improve the lives of Chicago area youth. Follow the links.

Resources & Announcements


* 2023 Points of Light Conference will be held in Chicago from June 14-16. click here for info. Follow on Twitter using #PointsofLight23.


* Chicago Mentoring Collaborative - click here


* National Mentoring Resource Center - click here


* Chicago Learning Exchange - click here


* Chicago STEM Pathways Cooperative - click here Learn about Landscape Surveys - click here


* Connect Illinois Digital Equity Coalition - click here


* MyChiMyFuture - Chicago youth programs map and directory. click here; visit the website - click here


* To & Through Project website - click here: Follow on Twitter - @UChiToThrough


* Center for Effective Philanthropy - click here


* Forefront -Illinois' statewide association of nonprofits, foundations and advisors. click here


* Chicago Public Schools locator map - click here


* Chicago Health Atlas - click here


* Incarceration Reform Resource Center - click here


* AfterSchool Alliance - resource center - click here


* ChiHackNight - remote civic technology meet-up; every Tuesday in Chicago - see weekly agenda

About this newsletter.
While I try to send this only once a month, I write blog articles weekly. Throughout the newsletter I post links to a few of the articles published in the past month or earlier. I encourage you to spend a little time each week reading these articles and following the links. Use the ideas and presentations in group discussions with other people who are concerned about the same issues.

View current and past newsletters at this link.

Encourage friends, family, co-workers to sign up to receive this newsletter. Click here.
(If you subscribe, don't forget to respond to the confirmation email).

Thank you for reading. Please help fund this work.

Tutor/Mentor Connection, Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC
Serving Chicago area since 1993

Thank you for reading. And thank you to those who help fund the
Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC and this newsletter. Please send a 2023 contribution.

Connect with Dan (tutormentor) on one of these social media platforms.
Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, c/o Merchandise Mart PO Box 3303, Chicago, Il. 60654 Phone. Skype #dbassill; FAX 312-787-7713; email: tutormentor2@earthlink.net | Powered by OpenSource!