Tuesday, May 22, 2007


This map shows where poverty is most concentrated in Chicago, and locations of public schools on the 2007 warning lists. In every neighborhood where there are poor schools a wide range of tutoring/mentoring, arts, technology and enrichment programs are needed. They need to be available in non-school hours and in community locations, as well as in schools and youth centers during the traditional school day and the hours between when school ends and when parents come home from work.

That is the goal of the Tutor/Mentor Connection . Theconference we hosted in Chicago last week was intended to support that goal. Now that the conference is over I hope that people who attended the conference, and others who are concerned about poor schools or youth on youth violence, or workforce development, will connect with each other in small groups, or in Internet forums, where you can continue to discuss the ideas shared at the conference, and innovate ways to make more and better volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs available in the neighborhoods with poor schools.

In these discussions I encourage you to learn ways to use maps to point resource providers and volunteers to programs in every neighborhood of Chicago. I encourage you to recruit leaders, who will strategically align the goals of their organizations with actions that surround kids with mentors and help those kids prepare for 21st century jobs and careers.

Our next campaign is a volunteer recruitment effort as school starts. If you can apply your leadership to help mobilize volunteers, you will be making a difference in the lives of youth throughout the Chicago region and in other cities around the country.

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