Monday, November 22, 2021

Imagine if this support had continued beyond one year

In 2007 Cabrini Connections-Tutor/Mentor Connection received a $50,000 grant from the Oprah Angle Network. Below is a story that appeared in the Angel Network newsletter, which is now only available through the Internet Archive.

That same year we received a year-end gift of over $55,000 from HSBC international as the North American recipient of their annual Holiday Charitable Giving. This was combined with a $50,000 grant from HSBC North America's charitable giving program, and an anonymous $50,000 grant to support rebuilding of the geographic mapping project and Chicago Tutor/Mentor Programs Directory. 

We entered 2008 with momentum and optimism.  

Then the financial markets collapsed. HSBC did not repeat its giving after 2009. The Angle Network grant was for one year only.  There were no more anonymous gifts. Funding took a deep dive that continued through 2011 and ultimately caused the Board of Directors to discontinue support for the Tutor/Mentor Connection, even though it was responsible for these major gifts in 2007. 

I created the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC in mid 2011 to give organizational structure and identity to my efforts to continue the Tutor/Mentor Connection after the split with Cabrini Connections. I did not have a team of volunteers to help me form a new non profit, and have not found one since then.

I've launched an annual appeal to ask people to help me to continue to provide "Hope and Opportunity" to kids in all high poverty neighborhoods of Chicago and other cities, and by drawing from my savings I have been able to keep the Tutor/Mentor Connection resources available.

But over the last 10 years I've had to discontinue some activities due to lack of financial support. The last Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference was held in May 2015.   The interactive Program Locator, Program Search Page, Map Gallery and Organizational History and Tracking System (OHATS) are now only available as archives.  

Yet, I still show Chicago area volunteer-based tutor and/or mentor programs on a map that you can zoom into to see small sections of the city. 

I host a list of Chicago tutor/mentor programs on the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC website, along with lists showing the Facebook and Instagram pages used by some of these programs.

In addition I host a list of Chicago programs on Twitter which you can use to easily see what information programs are sharing (when they do). 

I've begun a migration of the entire web library from the site to the site. You can see a page with links to youth serving organizations beyond my list of tutor/mentor programs at this link.

I continue to share information about using maps in planning in articles on this blog, and the site. 

Plus I continue to share strategy essays on SlideShare and as well as on this page.   In addition I share images on

I started sharing  ideas for helping inner city kids by helping organized volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs grow via a  printed newsletter in 1993. I began putting this information on a website in 1998 and started using YahooGroups and an email newsletter around 2001.

I started this blog in 2005 and the MappingforJustice blog was started in 2008. 

I continue to share information daily reaching people throughout the world.  

Imagine how much more I would have done over the past 12 years if the grants of 2007 had continued each year since then, by the original donors, or by new donors who would replace them each year.   

Now, imagine how much more would have been done to help inner city kids if hundreds of other people in Chicago and other major cities had been writing articles similar to mine for the last 15 to 20 years!

I'm sure you've heard this quote:

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb

Look through my archives and find ways to adopt the strategies I share as you begin 2022. Start telling the same stories as I tell, in any creative ways you can think of.  Do it weekly, monthly and yearly, for the next 20 years.  Change the future since we cannot change the past.

My websites and archives will remain available as long as I'm still alive, and will be available through the internet archive after that, unless some institution decides to take ownership and anchor the strategy for the future.  

I'm thankful for all of the people who have helped me since 1993 when we formed Cabrini Connections and the Tutor/Mentor Connection, and even before that, since 1975 when I became the leader of the tutoring program at Montgomery Ward, which I led till 1992. 

I'm thankful for being allowed to be part of the lives of so many young people over the past 40 years and love seeing many post success stories on Facebook.  

Finally, I'm thankful for the small group of donors who continue to provide contributions at the end of each year (click here) or to support my December 19th birthday (click here).

Enjoy your holidays. We've much work to do.

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