Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Year End Dinner Celebrates Tutoring/Mentoring for 16th Year

On June 12th Cabrini Connections celebrated the completion of its 16th year, with a dinner and awards ceremony. More than 150 parents, students, volunteers, leaders and odnors participated. Four graduating seniors were recognized and awards were given to recognize outstanding effort.

When I spoke to the group I said "thank you" for all of the work you've done, then I said "help me" keep Cabrini Connections growing for another year. I also talked about the need for tutor/mentor programs like Cabrini Connections in all parts of the Chicago region and asked for your help to make that happen.

We have two interns from Korea with us and they created a flash presentation that shows photos of the dinner.

In addition, Mike Takan created a map that shows where Cabrini Connections is in the city and wrote an article on his blog showing his own understanding of the work Cabrini Connections is doing.

On Mike's blog you can see maps of the entire city, illustrating how tutor/mentor programs need to be in places beyond Cabrini Green.

I encourage you to read these blogs and share them with friends, in your own efforts to mobilize more leadership to support the work we and others are doing to expand the "community" of people helping kids living in high poverty areas.

Thank you to everyone who helped make this year's dinner a success.

Monday, June 16, 2008

"Coming Together, Growing Together"

On June 12, 2008, Cabrini Connections hosted the Annual Year-End Dinner event in which parents, students, volunteers, staff, board members, alumni of the program, donors, and guests together celebrated the 2007-2008 school year and provided positive momentum as we head into the 2008-2009 year! The theme of the event was created by one of students(Nemieka Horton), and the theme of "Coming Together, Growing Together" was perfect for the what took place during the event and what we hope will continue to take place as a result of the event and the Cabrini Connections' program.

The idea of "Coming Together" was definitely evident at the Year-End Dinner. This event created an opportunity for parents, students, volunteers, staff, board members, donors, and guests alike to come together an not only celebrate the all of the accomplishments the have taken place throughout the year, but to also begin discussion about how to build upon those accomplishments within the program for the years to come. Connecting people to resources is one of the many missions that we attempt to carry out with the work that we do, and the Year-End Dinner was a great display of the result of a completion of that mission because this event connected parents to their student's tutors, board members to donors, donors to the students, staff to parents and so on.

The idea of "Growing Together" was evident at the Year-End Dinner as well and we hope that this growing together process continues. Everyone in attendance had the opportunity to hear from various students, parents, staff, and volunteers speak about their personal experiences with the program or the various ways in which they are connected to the program, and those powerful speeches were not only learning opportunities I personally feel as though those speeches brought everyone in the room closer to the understanding of the mission and the purpose of the Cabrini Connections' existence! The information that was provided, the feelings and emotions that were displayed, and the stories that were shared provided everyone in attendance the opportunity to 'share' in those experiences together.

With me being fairly new to the program and continuing the process of learning the history of the program, at the Year-End Dinner I personally was able to see the 'power' of the program. I witnessed laughter, hugs, sobbing, tears, smiles, and many more positive embraces at the event because of the power of the Cabrini Connections' program and what this program means to so many people. I hope that the people in attendance not only have similar thoughts, but will go one step further and share those thoughts with others so that more and more people will find ways to take part in the Cabrini Connections' program. So at this same time and place next year there will be double or triple the number of attendees at the Cabrini Connection Year-End Dinner sharing in the vision of this year's theme, "Coming Together, Growing Together"

EL Da' Sheon Nix
Administrative Coordinator

Monday, June 09, 2008

Cabrini Connections Year End Dinner, This Thursday, June 12

Cabrini Connections will hold its annual year end dinner and celebration of the 2007-08 school year accomplisments of students and volunteers on June 12 from 6pm to 8pm at the Cornerstone Center, 1111 N. Wells in Chicago.

Parking is tight in the area, so take public transportation if you can. Call 312-492-9614 to RSVP if you or your student are planning to attend, but have not yet added your name to the list.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Good news on college front!

I received an email from veteran volunteer Colin Haney this morning. It read

"Willie was recently informed that he was accepted at Morgan State in Baltimore. He is also receiving a very generous scholarship.

We owe an awful lot to your program and to your staff for providing such a great place to foster a relationship and afforded us so many great opportunities. I honestly believe none of this would have been possible without you providing such a great environment for us to meet each week. My deepest gratitude. "

This is great news and a great complement. Willie and Colin have been with Cabrini Connections for six years. They met at the Cabrini-Green Tutoring Program, which originated at Montgomery Ward in 1965. This is where Cabrini Connections also originated, and where many of our students and volunteers come from.

High school graduation and college is a goal we strive to achieve at Cabrini Connections and the type of results we hope to help other tutor/mentor programs achieve in other areas.

However, we cannot do this without continued annual donations from many people. Please visit and make a contribution in honor of Willie, and in support of the 2008-09 school year programs.