Friday, March 2, 2012

Use maps to change the political will!

I encourage you to take a look at the Kids Count Data Center, which is provided as a service of the Anne E. Casey Foundation. You can make your own maps using the data on the site, or if you are a GIS expert, you can download the data and use your own GIS. I don't have a lot of time to dig through this DataCenter to know what types of maps can be produced, but I hope it has the capacity to go beyond state level to view the data at the city or county level. There is such a difference between poverty in big cities like Chicago and the rest of the state of Illinois that a statewide report does not really show how bad things are in the big cities.

Furthermore, I would like to see an example of how the maps can be used to build public involvement in actions that reduce poverty based on information shared by many organizations via the Internet.

I posted this article to show how maps could be used to mobilize enough votes to pass legislation regarding high school drop out issues.

I posted this article to show how people can make their own map stories using the Tutor/Mentor Program Locator.

And, I posted this article to show how people can communicate these ideas to their own networks and take responsibility for "expanding the choir" of people involved, and who ultimately vote for public policies favorable to helping the poor and the organizations helping the poor.

I'd be happy to spend a couple hours with your organization or company to help you understand and apply these ideas. I'd love to help your school create a Tutor/Mentor Institute Club, where students learn to apply these ideas so they can have a greater impact on what adults to to support their own learning opportunities.

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