Tutor/Mentor programs rely heavily on individual donations and government funding. Although government funding varies on both the location and size of the program, individual donations remain steady with a stable economy. As the economy has weakened, spending habits have changed for families of all income levels. Donations have decreased as a result, and Tutor/Mentor programs are feeling the effects.
After another election has come and gone, millions of dollars have once again been thrown into slanderous campaigns that deliver the same messages over and over. Attacking one another, no candidate ever escapes with a positive image, and those millions of dollars have gone to waste. One can only imagine the thousands of lives affected if this money was used towards struggling non-school tutor/mentor programs. Facilities upgraded, capability to accept more students, newer books, and possibly even the establishments of new tutor/mentor programs entirely.
If future candidates wanted to do something to positively benefit their image, they could use their money promoting their willingness to help the community as opposed to ripping other candidates. For example, the Daley political machine of the last few decades has put a focus upon using scare tactics to sway votes in their direction. While this was more prominent during the previous Daley administration, funds were constantly being thrown towards these tactics instead of being used to effectively benefit the community. Unfortunately, public funding will never account for a large percentage of dollars for tutor/mentor programs. Government funding and donations have long since provided the financial support for tutor/mentor programs, and in a struggling economy, public funding is unlikely to change for the better. Our hope is that elected leaders will realize the countless benefits of supporting tutor/mentor programs and focusing their attention on helping the community as opposed to their most common strategy of making each and every one of the candidates look unqualified.
As for the future Explore Chicago students that will take the time out of their lives to spread knowledge about tutor/mentor programs in the Near North Side area, you are researching a much different area than most neighborhoods that will be assigned to other groups in class. This neighborhood is full of wealthy families that pay higher taxes for stronger schools. The need for tutor/mentor programs is lesser on the North Side than the South Side. However, the need to spread information and provide assistance for these programs remains the same no matter what neighborhood is being researched. Good luck, and don’t forget that ‘real’ people are relying on your information.
P.S. Ask not what Dan Bassill can do for you, but what you can do for Dan Bassill.