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Strategy to accomplish the Mission


"When nonprofit and community leaders share ideas, insights and information in ways that promote social impact...knowledge-sharing can improve organizational effectiveness. When we share what works and what doesn't... it results in accelerated learning, less reinventing the wheel, better service, and measurable results."

2003 quote by Mr. Tim Wilmot. Chief Knowledge and Evaluation Officer, Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation


map of chicago

The Tutor/Mentor Institute mission is accomplished through a four-part strategy. See PDF

    1. Increase knowledge of tutor/mentor programs, where they are needed, what it takes to help them succeed and what individuals, business, faith groups, universities, etc. can do to help. Read more.
    2. Increase frequency of stories about tutoring/mentoring in order to build awareness for the tutor/mentor movement, individual organizations and the need for such programs. More.
    3. Help people understand and use the information on the web sites, via conferences, blogs, on-line forums, one-on-one mentoring of volunteers, leaders and organizers, etc. More
    4. Increase the flow of critically needed resources (dollars, volunteers, training, ideas, business partners, technology, and media attention) directly to programs in every poverty area of Chicago. As we increase the number of volunteers involved, and support their on-going learning, we increase the number of people working to help kids overcome challenges of poverty. This is the result of "Mentoring as part of a larger strategy". More.

This web site is called the Tutor/Mentor Institute. It shares ideas generated by leading a volunteer based tutor/mentor program in Chicago over the past 35 years.   In the Tutor/Mentor Connection web site you will find more than 2000 links to hundreds of other tutoring/mentoring organizations, as well as researchers, businesses, education writers, and others. These represent a body of knowledge that anyone can use to build their own strategies of what it takes to help kids from poverty be starting jobs and careers by age 25.

View concept map, illustrating  Tutor/Mentor Connection goals.   View animated strategy map (flash)

The vision and commitment to volunteer-based tutoring/mentoring comes from leading a site-based program since 1975 in the Cabrini-Green neighborhood of Chicago.

While the Tutor/Mentor Connection seeks to help volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs grow in all high poverty areas of Chicago, the T/MC was created in 1993 by volunteers who were also creating the Cabrini Connections site-based tutor/mentor program to serve 7th to 12th grade teens in Chicago. As we built the Cabrini Connections program from 1993 to 2011 we also were building a Tutor/Mentor Connection strategy intended to help all programs, including Cabrini Connections, find the resources, ideas and talent needed to operate and constantly improve from year-to-year.  

Because we operated a single tutor/mentor program from 1993-2011, we have a pragmatic understanding of the challenges of operating such an organization, which range from obtaining resources, finding and training dedicated staff, managing a facility, recruiting students and volunteers, and finding a way to keep these students and volunteers connected to each other, and to Cabrini Connections, long enough to have an impact on the lives of the students, and the volunteers.

These are challenges no single program can overcome, so we created the Tutor/Mentor Connection to learn how others were solving these problems. We realized that a small single program has difficulty attracting the attention of media, political and business leaders, and big foundations, so finding resources would be difficult. However, by building a database of all tutor/mentor programs in Chicago and asking leaders to build strategies that reach every program, we felt that we could expand the range of leaders who were pushing resources to tutor/mentor programs all neighborhoods, including our program in Cabrini Green.

As you browse the various sections of this web site, and other web sites that we manage, you'll build an understanding of this vision and strategy, and of how it can radically change the way non profits are supported, thus, how well they can do their work.

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!