It has been great to see the number of participants and groups grow on Classroom 2.0. I've met some talented people and gained some useful ideas.
However, I did a search on the ning.com home page over the weekend, for youth mentoring, and found dozens of pages with this title. Thus, my question to this group is "how are we connecting what we're doing here, with what others are talking about in other ning.com forums? How are we putting the ideas to work to create more learning opportunities for kids? How are we reaching the most disadvantaged kids?"
I host a conference in Chicago every six months to bring people together and to call attention to volunteer-based tutoring/mentoring, as a strategy to expand the adult network of support for kids in high poverty areas, and as a strategy to fill the non-school yours with learning and mentoring activities that compete against street gangs and other negative influences for the attention and participation of kids.
The next is May 29 and 30 and I hope you'll use your technology to help me draw more people to this event. The web site is http://www.tutormentorconference.org
While it will be great to meet face to face with anyone who can get to Chicago, my goal in posting this is that it's also an opportunity to reach out to other on-line forums and try to build a connection between us in our own forums, and others who also are working with disadvantaged youth, or distance learning, so that we share more ideas, and we find ways to work together to overcome capacity issues that prevent us from putting many of the good ideas to work, or reaching more of the kids who need our help.
I'd be happy to answer any questions. I've also created a forum focused on volunteer-based tutoring and mentoring. You can find it at http://tutormentorconnection.ning.com