Monday, December 10, 2007

Building Public Will - Expanding the Choir

If you've read past articles on this blog, you can see that I'm singing the same song, over and over, trying to connect people who can help, such as volunteers, donors, business leaders, with tutor/mentor programs that have a long-term, volunteer-based strategy of mentoring inner-city kids through school and into careers.

In many ways, I'm a choir of one, I'm singing solo. I'm a whisper in the wilderness. In order to achieve the goals I write about, I need to expand the size of the choir, enlist more people to sing different parts of the music, and take different roles in this orchestra.

The result, is a growing reverberation, or Hallelujah Chorus, of people supporting youth in different neighborhoods of Chicago, and different neighborhoods of other big cities around the country...and the world.

So, how do we do this. How do we build the public will needed to not just support tutoring/mentoring, but willing to sacrifice more than token levels of time, talent and dollars, for many years, even decades.

I don't have a simple solution. I do have a path. I point to web sites where other people are writing about this topic, and educating their readers. Thus, every time you visit my blog, or the Tutor/Mentor Connection web site, you're pointed to other places where researchers, writers, tutor/mentor leaders, are educating readers about why and where and how they can help build this public support for programs that use volunteers in many roles to mentor inner city kids toward jobs and careers.

Everyone who reads one of my articles and shares it with a friend, or who passes on a link to the T/MC web site, is taking a role in this choir. Thank you.

Since we're in the year-end fund raising period, here's a few articles that I encourage you to read which related to building public support, and raising funds for non profits. I hope many readers will uses these ideas to raise money during December, and 2008, for volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs, such as Cabrini Connections.

Building Public Will at http://www.metgroup.com/content/index.php?pid=58

From Spare Change to Real Change: The Social Sector as a Beta Site for Business Innovation - http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/2974.html

How to Use the Internet for Group Fund Raising - http://www.socialactions.com/site/how-to-use-the-internet-for-group-fundraising

Guidelines for Funding Non Profits - call for general operating support - http://www.independentsector.org/issues/buildingvalue/opsupport.html

The Sustainable NonProfit - The Ten Immutable Laws of the (Fundraising) Universe
by Carl Richardson - http://foundationcenter.org/pnd/tsn/tsn.jhtml?id=47800041

Follow the links at the side of this blog and in the LINKS LIBRARY and you'll find many other people who are sharing information and raising awareness, in an effort to mobilize resources for organizations working with at risk kids, and working to help more kids prepare for 21st century careers.

As we head through December, many people will be thinking of ways to share their blessings, or make this a better world. Cabrini Connections is not the only tutor/mentor program in Chicago. If you point friends and families to places like the Chicago Program Links on the T/MC web site, you can help us build support for Cabrini Connections and all other tutor/mentor programs in the Chicago region and in other cities.

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