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Voter Suppression: It’s Mobilization Time

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With this article we will start detailing the ingredients of a revisable action plan that needs comments and revisions as we move toward the Tuesday, November 4, 2014 General Election.  

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WHEN THE HUMOR IS GONE

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Educate, Organize and Mobilize: I’ve been doing commentaries on our Campaign to Defeat Voter Suppression since November, 2013.  Because the right to vote is fundamental to our democracy, I’ve tried to promote a non-partisan theory of voter enfranchisement. 

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By Peter Grear

Educate, Organize and Mobilize: Frequently, in going forward it is imperative to examine your history.  In 1638 the Maryland Colony issued a public edict encouraging the separation of the races that became the public policy of America. 

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Download Greater Diversity News Digital PDF Edition for FREE

Download Greater Diversity News Digital PDF Edition for FREE

FREE Full PDF Edition includes stories not featured on the website

The FREE Full PDF Edition includes stories not featured on the website. No paper, no hasel, read on your laptop or mobile devices. 

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Big Brothers Big Sisters & African American Fraternities Enter Mentoring Month

Written by Featured Organization on 08 January 2010.

Action Plan to Help Black Boys Succeed

PHILADELPHIA -- Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and leaders of the nation's largest African American fraternities enter National Mentoring Month 2010 with a bold action plan to significantly increase the number of black Big Brothers, beginning this year.

The plan is the result of Big Brothers Big Sisters African American Mentoring Summit in Atlanta in December. Sponsored by the Arby's Foundation, the Summit was the culmination of Big Brothers Big Sisters recently launched collaborative partnership with Alpha Phi Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi and Omega Psi Phi fraternities aimed at getting more black men engaged in long-term mentoring. Recognizing that children of color, particularly African American boys, disproportionately represent children waiting to be matched, Big Brothers Big Sisters and its African American Roundtable (internal and external advisors) have made engaging black men a priority.

During the summit, Big Brothers Big Sisters' national president, Karen Mathis, hosted agency leaders, heads of the Alphas, Kappas and Omegas, mentoring advocates/supporters, 100 Black Men and Susan Taylor's National Cares Mentoring Movement. Georgia Congressman John L. Lewis and Rev. Dr. W. Wilson Goode, Jr. shared strategies with the national non-profit and fraternity leaders about how to build national movements. Goode, former Philadelphia mayor and member of Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity, is the father of the national non-profit's successful Amachi Mentoring Children of Prisoners program and serves on the board of Big Brothers Big Sisters Southeastern Pennsylvania. Lewis, a renowned civil rights leader, is a member of Phi Beta Sigma, another fraternity expected to join the national black fraternity mentoring collaboration.

Details of the plan include specific actions by fraternity leadership and chapters as well as Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and its agencies, particularly those identified as serving the largest number of African American families.

Fraternity Chapter Action Plan

  • Build relationships with other chapters in the community, Big Brothers Big Sisters, elected officials and other community leaders to support children through mentoring.
  • Actively recruit volunteers, particularly men.
  • Organize recruitment and awareness events such as Barbershop Recruitment, Final Four Parties, social mixers that increase awareness of how the fraternity is activating citizens to make a difference through mentoring with Big Brothers Big Sisters.
  • Work in houses of worship, work places, and in the community to encourage others to participate.
  • Seek leadership roles as board members and other key volunteer positions with Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies.
  • Consider career opportunities with Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies.
  • Support local agency fundraising activities, such as "Bowl for Kids' Sake", golf tournaments and other activities.

Individual Fraternity Member Action Plan

  • Contact mentoringbrothers.org to learn how to become a Big Brother in the community-based or school based program or support Big Brothers Big Sisters with a donation.
  • Actively recruit other volunteers, particularly men.
  • Work in houses of worship, places of work, and in the community to encourage others to participate.
  • Seek leadership roles as board members and other key volunteer positions with Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies.
  • Consider career opportunities with Big Brothers Big Sisters.
  • Support local fundraising activities, such as "Bowl for Kids' Sake", golf tournaments and other activities.

Fraternities' Region, Providence and District Action Plan

  • Integrate the partnership into region's strategic direction and programming and to drive performance by including progress reports at board meetings, leadership conferences, national conventions, regional conventions and in house journals.
  • Appoint leadership at the region, providence and district levels.

Big Brothers Big Sisters Agency Action Plan

  • Sustain a relationship between the agency leadership team and the leadership of both the collegiate and alumni chapters.
  • Appoint a liaison to the fraternities to ensure the chapters and its members receive excellent customer service.
  • Use the volunteer affiliation feature in Agency Information Management system to measure the performance of the partnership in terms of both scale and quality.
  • Involve members in effort to drive resources as donors (particularly via Greek Bowl for Kids' Sake events) and volunteer generation (particularly via Barbershop recruitment and social events).
  • Use the National Strategic Plan Intentionality Checklist to integrate partnerships into business plan.
  • Learn about the fraternity's contribution to the local community and to the nation.
  • Participate in local conventions and those regional and national conventions hosted by the city.
  • Set a goal for the number of Big Brothers from the chapter and manage performance.
  • Consider the chapters' members in search for high quality staff and board members.
  • Work with the fraternity to develop resources to support the partnership.
  • Use brand and public relations capacity to promote and celebrate the fraternity and its contribution to youth development.
  • Report on successful relationships between the Big Brothers and Little Brothers and successful Big Brother recruitment strategies.

Big Brothers Big Sisters National Office Action Plan

  • President and CEO, or her designee, will attend all national fraternity conventions.
  • Host an annual Leadership Summit.
  • Make leadership, board and staff diversity a priority.
  • Appoint liaison to steward relationship with each partner.
  • Provide learning and development opportunities for Big Brothers Big Sisters staff and fraternity members.
  • Work with local agencies and fraternity partners to secure funding to support the partnerships.

About Big Brothers Big Sisters

Big Brothers Big Sisters helps vulnerable children beat the odds. The organization depends on donations to help conduct background checks on volunteers to ensure child safety; and provide ongoing support for children, families and volunteers to build and sustain long-lasting relationships, key to successful mentoring. Big Brothers Big Sisters is proven by independent research to improve children's odds for succeeding in school, behaving nonviolently, avoiding drugs and alcohol, and breaking negative cycles. Headquartered in Philadelphia and with nearly 400 agencies across the country, Big Brothers Big Sisters serves more than a quarter million children. Learn how you can change how children grow up in America by going to BigBrothersBigSisters.org and MentoringBrothers.org.

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