Making It Happen in Chicago!
WTTW's American Graduate Community Partners joined forces to bring attention to the intervention programs taking place throughout the city to improve the lives of at-risk children and teens. These are just a handful of nonprofit organizations that need your help to make high school graduation a reality for kids in Chicago. Click the image below to watch their video.
Now PlayingAfter School Matters
How can YOU make it happen?
There are several ways to get involved, and many non-profit organizations in the Chicago area need your help to make graduation happen. Getting involved is as easy as 1-2-3.
- Learn about the organizations working with at-risk children and youth in your community, or near your workplace. Find out what kind of support is most needed. Some organizations need volunteers and professional partnerships, while others may need your financial support. Contact a representative of the organization to explore opportunities for getting involved.
- Determine what time or resources you are willing to share. Each organization may require different levels of commitment, and you should find something that fits your comfort level.
- Once you have made the choice to get involved, be committed. Your efforts will be valuable to the organization you choose and the young people whose lives you’ll change.
I don’t have the time to volunteer, what else can I do?
Volunteering is just one of the many ways to be a “champion” for students at risk of dropping out of high school. Be aware of the issues leading to low graduation rates, know the institutions and organizations that are making a difference, and support their efforts. Being civically engaged in your community is critical. Speak to your alderman; write letters to your representatives in support of programs that are making a difference.
Recognizing and raising awareness of the importance of intervention programs as a way to improve the success of our community will go a long way in supporting the work they do and the children they serve.
Share stories of American Graduate Champions on social media (#amgradchicago) and promote the great work others are doing to increase graduation rates in Chicago!
WTTW has partnered with organizations across Chicago to raise awareness of the dropout crisis and the many services and opportunities available to individuals needing assistance, or who wish to volunteer. The following organizations have shared their expertise, knowledge, creativity, passion, and commitment with Chicago's young people and their families.
Educational Resources for At-Risk Students
- Youth Connection Charter Schools (YCCS)
- Chicago Public Schools (CPS)
- Alternative Safe Schools
- Saturday Morning Alternative Reach-Out and Teach (SMART)
- Chicago Public Schools, Office of Student Support and Engagement
- Communities In Schools of Chicago
After School and Extra-Curricular Programs
- After School Matters
- America Scores—Chicago
- American Indian Center of Chicago
- Better Boys Foundation (BBF)
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Chicago
- Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago
- Boys and Girls Clubs of Lake County
- By The Hand Club for Kids
- Chicago Urban League
- Free Spirit Media (FSM)
- Alternative Schools Network (ASN)
- America’s Promise Alliance
- University of Chicago Consortium on School Research (CCSR)
Helpful Websites for Volunteers
- One Good Deed
An initiative spearheaded by the City of Chicago that provides people with easy opportunities to volunteer. Visit the website to find out about the numerous ways you can help students graduate from high school.
- Tutor/Mentor Connection
The Tutor/Mentor Connection website makes it easy to find an organization near you that needs your help. You will find a database of nonprofit organizations that need volunteers, tutors, and mentors narrowed down by neighborhood or zip code.
- Ingenuity Incorporated
Ingenuity Incorprated is an organization working to bring quality arts programming to every child in the Chicago Public Schools. They do this by providing resources to schools, teachers, and principals, research and information about the value and prevalence of arts education in Chicago, and advocacy.
An opportunity for youth to get involved, Voice of Youth in Chicago Education (VOYCE) is a youth-organizing collaboration in Chicago that works with young leaders to create strategies to improve Chicago Public Schools including changing disciplinary policies, finding scholarship options for undocumented students, and increasing peer leadership programs.