Wednesday, September 24, 2014
"I met with Sean recently and he's working at Weber Grill and will be entering his second year in college this fall. I tutored Sean for 8 years through the Tutoring Chicago and Cabrini Connections programs in Chicago. He always came to tutoring on time and with his homework. He is a bright young man. I was able to help him get a job interview at Weber Grill through one of my contacts. He got the job on his on. I'm very proud of him. He's doing well there. He will continue his studies in Chicago this fall. I've stayed connected with his Mom and Grandmother even though he finished high school in June 2012.
I'm now back at the Tutoring Chicago program and starting my 45th year of mentoring with my student from last year, Davion Willis. Erin McPartlin is the director and she's the one that got Sean and I together eight years ago when the program was called Cabrini-Green Tutoring Program, Inc."
I asked Allen if he was now raising money for Tutoring Chicago just as he did for Cabrini Connections when he was a volunteer there. He said, "Yes. I raised close to $10,000 last year."
Why does he continue to tutor, and why does he raise money for the programs? He said "I enjoy it! Once you're connected and see the benefit of what you do, it's easy to ask people you know to help."
this article I show how I've been connected to my first mentee for 40 years!
Allen and I both have longterm histories because the programs we were part of provided great support, and managed to survive on inconsistent funding and tremendous levels of volunteer involvement for all of these years. Just to be clear, I was the volunteer leader of the Montgomery Ward program from 1974 to 1990 and led the conversion into a non profit in 1990. I led it until October 1992 when I and six other volunteers left to create the Cabrini Connections program and the Tutor/Mentor Connection (T/MC). I led the CC program till June 2011 when I left and formed Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC in order to continue the T/MC after the strategy was dropped from the Cabrini Connections program.
My ideas and passion come from leading these two programs and from the constant struggle to find and keep operating resources that were essential to supporting the involvement of hundreds of pairs of youth and volunteers.
I point to the Lawyers Lend A Hand to Youth via blog articles not because they are great, but because they have been working at raising money to support tutor/mentor programs in multiple locations for nearly 20 years! I want more legal and professional groups to duplicate this, and do it better! That's the only way to help more tutor/mentor programs grow. We need to build a generation of leaders who are proactive in what they do every day to encourage volunteer involvement and support it with dollars and talent from other volunteers.
I've written about this often and have probably spent more time thinking about this than most people in America. I really appreciate it when people like Steve Sewall, Mark Carter, Betsey Merkel, Kelly Fair, Steve Braxton, the Jefferson Awards Program and others post articles on their sites helping people understand what I'm doing.
Just as individual programs cannot operate effectively on an on-going basis without financial support, neither can I or other intermediaries. If you want to help me, a tax deductible donation can be make as a conference sponsor, using this link.
If you're not concerned with the tax deduction, or my tax status (I'm a LLC) with no revenue, then use this form and become a supporter.
If you're a long term volunteer like Allen, I encourage you to create a blog and share your story. Encourage others to get involved, and encourage others to provide the talent and financial support every single tutor/mentor program in Chicago or any city needs to support these long-term connections.