Urban Initiatives’ mission is to empower Chicago’s youth to become agents of community change through academic success, healthy living, and leadership development. They take a collaborative approach to development in order to provide children with the opportunity to reach their full potential. Today, they serve 13,000 youth in 51 schools across 37 underserved communities through our innovative sports-based programs.
For over 25 years, Cara has helped men and women affected by poverty get and keep good jobs. And, more importantly, rebuild hope, self-esteem, and opportunity for themselves and their families in the process. But their results don’t just end with employment. They also maintain market-competitive businesses that create gateway jobs for those they serve. For every dollar invested in this work, $5.97 is reinvested in society over a five year time horizon. The work is not only important because of its clear goal of bringing individuals in need back to the dignity and the productivity of employment, but because of its clear mission to transform people’s lives.
Green City Market (GCM) is a 501(c) (3) not for profit organization founded in 1998. GCM’s mission is to provide a marketplace for purchasing sustainably grown food and connecting farmers and local producers directly to chefs and the greater Chicago community. GCM aims to create a sustainable food system in Chicago through our markets, outreach, and educational programming. GCM values farmers who take care of the land; the preservation of sustainably farmed land; a vibrant thriving community of local farms; and consumption of locally grown foods.
Chicago Lights provides hope and opportunity to our city’s children, youth, and adults who face the challenges of poverty. Through supportive relationships and diverse programs, we empower people to thrive academically, secure economic stability, lead healthy lives, and build community. This fall, we’re looking for volunteers to join our Associates Board – a group of philanthropic young professionals – or to betutor/mentors for students in grades one through twelve with the Chicago Lights Tutoring program.
iMentor builds mentoring relationships that empower first-generation students from low-income communities to graduate high school, succeed in college, and achieve their ambitions. With just one weekly online communication and one monthly in-person event, any college graduate can be an effective mentor for a Chicago student. iMentor provides a curriculum and full staff support to ensure success.
The Simple Good is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization whose mission is connect the meaning of ‘good’ from around the world to empower at-risk youth to bring positivity into communities through art and discussion. Through public art projects and youth art programming, we transcend the message that no matter where you go in the world, good means the same to all of us – and that is what connects us as human beings.
Sweet Water Foundation utilizes a blend of urban agriculture, art and education to transform vacant spaces and abandoned buildings into economically and ecologically productive and sustainable community assets that produce engaged youth, skilled workers, art, locally grown food and affordable housing.
C.A.P.E. inspires students’ passion for education by bringing academic subjects to life through the arts. They partner teaching artists with Chicago Public School teachers to develop original, creative lesson plans that weave visual and performing arts into traditional classroom subjects. This type of teaching has been proven to better engage students, improve their grades, and boost their self-esteem and confidence for maximized classroom impact.