Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Coaches Compete to Recruit Most Mentors

I received an email yesterday from David Shapiro of MENTOR, telling of a competition between high profile college football coaches in Kansas, Iowa and Nebrasa who were competing between August 1 and November 30, 2012 to see who could sign up the most mentors. This page on the Volunteer Iowa web site shows how the challenge was used to mobilize volunteers.

A few years ago at Cabrini Connections we attempted to launch a competition between alumni at the University of Illinois and Northwestern to see who could raise the most money during the football season for the program. Teams were headed by former quarterbacks at each school. We raised almost $10,000 during the campaign but could not gain support to grow it the following years.

I've been writing articles promoting involvement of college and pro athletes in on-going campaigns to recruit not only volunteers, but donors, to support volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs in the cities where each team operates. This PDF outlines the intermediary role athletes might take to support programs throughout a city, not just one or two high profile programs, or their own charity.

Coaches can support this with their own efforts. This wiki page outlines the idea that coaches could teach athletes and leaders to become proactive in building strong tutor/mentor programs throughout a community. Perhaps the example of the Coaches Challenge in Kansas, Iowa and Nebraska will help others see their potential.

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