Thursday, January 28, 2010

Cabrini Madness Is Underway!

In anticipation of the college basketball tournament season and a way to bring in some much needed resources to the organization, Cabrini Connections' has started it's own tournament...a FUNdraising tournament called Cabrini Madness!!!

Cabrini Madness is a FUNdraising project that promotes teamwork, program advocacy, and is really just a fun way to obtain the necessary resources our program needs to continue providing the services that our students and volunteers have grown to love. Each team must have atleast 1 student, 1 volunteer, 1 person in a leadership position (staff, Volunteer Coordinator, Board Member etc...) and atleast one person who is outside of the program and teams can have up to 10 members on the roster. And we added this component as a way of expanding our Cabrini Connections' network.

This project was launched in the early part of this month and will last until the NCAA Men's National Championship game on April 5th...well for those two Cabrini Madness teams that make the finals (smile). To get the full details of Cabrini Madness you can go here. And we went a little wild with the creativity put into this project by putting together an actual Cabrini Madness Brackett, so players, coaches, and fans can see their teams either advance to the next round(s) know the rest! And each team will have put together and launched a Give Forward fundraising page to college their team's donations, which is ultimately the teams' scoreboard.

~Become a Fan, Become a Donor, Become a Member of the Cabrini Connections' TEAM~

Monday, January 18, 2010

Cabrini Connections Answers President Obama's Call

On Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Day on 2009 President Obama called for a day of service to all Americans to act upon M.L.K.'s vision of assisting those in need. And he not only called for a day of service, President Obama lead by example by volunteering his time at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. And just one year later Obama and people all throughout America are continuing to answer that call for a day of service.

While there are people who are off from work and school for this holiday, several Cabrini Connections' students and staff, decided to 'work' on their day off. Cabrini Connections' Program Assistant, Bradley Troast, lead a group of nearly a dozen students to James Wadsworth Elementary School to join others in helping to beautify this South side school. The group will be cleaning the halls and classrooms, taking out any and all trash and waste, painting the walls and murals, and just collectively doing what they can to enhance the visual appeal of the school.

This opportunity was announced to the Cabrini Connections' group during announcements the last two weeks, and the several of the students signed up to volunteer without hesitation. The group met here in the center around 7:30am on this cold January day, to assist others. Being a tutoring/mentoring program that serves a population where many of the students come from very low income household, this shows the character of the students that make up our program. They are sacrificing their 'off day' to assist others who more than likely coming from a similar community to Cabrini-Green. I am extremely proud of those students and staff member Bradley Troast answering Obama's call for a "Day of Service." My call for YOU, is to make an effort to support our program and the volunteers, staff, and most importantly the students.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

NFL Combine and Cabrini Connections

Every year teams in the National Football League invite players to their facilities for a workout. The teams are looking for football players who work hard, have talent, have the drive and determination to be a professional football player, and players who would be a nice fit to their organization. Nearly each team in the NFL sends these invites out hoping that they can add what could be the missing link to their team's road to a Super Bowl victory!!!

All throughout the year our tutoring/mentoring league (Tutor/Mentor Connection) and the individual teams (tutoring/mentoring programs) are doing the exact same thing. Just like the NFL, each program is looking for the resources, whether is volunteers, students, supplies, and/or dollars and add to our programs so that we can be one of the best programs in the league. Unlike the NFL, we are not competing against other teams, but we are all looking to reach a similar goal of being a program that is equipped with the necessary resources to provide the players and coaches (students and volunteers) so that they can be successful.

The Tutor/Mentor Connection can be considered the tutoring/mentoring league that provides resources for each of the individual teams to use to better their own programs, but also to share what they are doing so other programs can better themselves as well. And the Tutor/Mentor Connection goes as far as hosting two conferences a year, which could be considered coach's clinics, so that members of the programs that make up this league can all come to network, share strategies, and hopefully brainstorm ways in which the entire tutoring/mentoring league can obtain the dollars so that each individual organization can benefit as a result.

Although, the programs are seeking resources throughout the year to enhance their team, the month of January is National Mentoring Month, and this month is similar to the month where the NFL combine where organizations promote what they do in hopes that the right talents joins their team. Cabrini Connections is just one of the many programs in the Tutor/Mentor Connection league and during this month we have had promo material on CanTV, the staff in the front office has been writing various blog articles about National Mentoring month, and the players and coaches already on our team have been sharing their stories about being involved in this league and on the Cabrini Connections' team. And as a result there have been several prospective new members who have begun to answer the call to be a new player and coach...and hopefully we receive new fans to become donors!

The Pittsburgh Steelers is just one of the teams in the National Football League, Cabrini Connections is just one of the teams in the Tutor/Mentor Connection league, but both teams in their respective leages are similar in that they have to have the right people and resources in place to have a GUARANTEED VICTORY...

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

2010 NFL Pro Bowl and Cabrini Connections

On Sunday January 31, 2010 the NFL's biggest and best athletes will take the field in Miami to showcase their skills, talents, and natural ability in the 2010 Pro Bowl. You will see the likes of future Hall of Fame QB's Peyton Manning and Brett Farve, running back sensations Chris Johnson and Adrian Peterson, shut down corners Darrell Revis and Charles Woodson, and many many more of the best that the NFL has to offer! Many will watch the game and see these stars on the field but maybe not dig deeper into how these players earned the right to be in this year's Pro Bowl, and many more will not dig even deeper and take the time out to think about all of the work that is put into the overall Pro Bowl event!

Almost all of the players who earned a right to be selected to the Pro Bowl spent the off-season, the summer, and the entire season perfecting their skills and talents and as a result of that hard work, they earned a right to be considered one of the best the game has to offer. For the Pro Bowl itself there are numerous teams of people, resources, and countless hours put in to present this event to the world! The event is filled with people who market, promote, work in concessions, tv stations, and field crews who all work directly and indirectly as a team to present the 2010 Pro Bowl in Miami, Florida.

The Cabrini Connections' program, and many tutoring/mentoring programs similar to ours, have been preparing for this month as well; because the month of January is National Mentoring Month. This is the month where the nation not only brings attention to the need of mentors all throughout the world, but this a month where many mentors will be recognized and honored for all of their hard work throughout the year; similar to the players on the Pro Bowl rosters. In our program we will definitely find ways to recognize and show our appreciation for all of the mentors who share their time, talents, and knowledge with the program and maybe more importantly, the students they they mentor.

Similar to the Pro Bowl, the is a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes of Cabrini Connections that provides us with an opportunity to not only recognize our dedicated and committed tutor/mentors, but even more work and resources are needed to even have a Cabrini Connections' so that we can have a place for the tutor/mentors and the students. The Pro Bowl is filled with field crews, camera crews, marketing, advertisement, concession works, and many more people involved in the event all working together to have a successful Pro Bowl event. Cabrini Connections, Tutor/Mentor Connection has 6 staff members (no Fundraising/Marking Coordinator) , a Board of Directors, 80 active students, and nearly 95 active volunteers...and just like those involved with the Pro Bowl, we have goals as well and one of those goals is to have a successful Cabrini Connections' program!

For both the Pro Bowl and the Cabrini Connections' program to be successful quite simply, funds are needed! So if you are a fan of seeing some of the most dedicated, committed, and qualified Pro Bowl type of tutor/mentors work with youth that could greatly benefit now and in the future from these bonds please make an effort to support Cabrini Connections during this National Mentoring Month.

~Most only see the tip of an iceberg and not all that create a solid foundation~

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Great Way to Start the 2nd Quarter and the New Year

The Cabrini Connections' staff hopes that everybody had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!! Thanks to the Cabrini Connections, Tutor/Mentor Connection's Board of Directors, the staff received a week off for the holidays. Thank You! Now it's time to get back to work and with January being National Mentoring Month that should be great momentum for all staff, mentors, and even students as we kick off our 2nd quarter of the 2009-2010 tutoring/mentoring year.

As the Administrative Coordinator of the Cabrini Connections' program, I can't say enough about the dedication, commitment, and the genuine caring that our mentors display week in and week out here at Cabrini Connections. Although January is National Mentoring Month, we try to show our appreciation to our mentors all throughout the year because our mentors work hard all year long!

Last year the Cabrini Connections' Youth Leadership Council and the entire student body at Cabrini Connections, surprised the mentors with a video of the students expressing their appreciation and gratitude for those mentors who mean so much to them. Check out those videos here. We will just have to see what the students will come up with in 2010!?!?!

Cabrini Connections, not even National Mentoring Month would even be possible without the great people who put themselves in a position to be mentors to youth and even peers throughout the world. I personally thank you and commend you for all that you do to change the world in a positive way. And for programs like ours to be productive and successful, great mentors are needed, but also being able to provide the resources and tools to mentors is just as important. So we thank all of our current donors/supporters and are always seeking new donors/supporters as well.

Become a Fan, Become a Mentor, Become a Donor