Media Advisory: Illinois families in deep poverty will be better able to meet basic needs through the COIN Act

First increase to TANF grant in a decade

Illinois families living in deep poverty will see a significant increase in their cash assistance, provided by the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, with the adoption of the Creating Opportunities for Illinoisans in Need (COIN) Act in the 2018-2019 Illinois budget implementation bill.

The TANF program provides monthly cash assistance to needy children and their families which must cover all non-food expenses, including rent, utilities, clothing, personal hygiene products, diapers, and transportation. And while the current cash grant is much needed to help cover expenses, it is just not enough for families to fully support their basic human needs. Continue reading Media Advisory: Illinois families in deep poverty will be better able to meet basic needs through the COIN Act

Rose Shure gives legacy gift, supporting CCH’s HomeWorks

Rose and Sidney Shure, 1964

A generous bequest from long-time donor Rose Shure has been dedicated to CCH’s HomeWorks campaign, which advocates for housing and better school services for homeless families.

“While she was never homeless as a child, Rose rose out of poverty because her family stressed the value of education above all else,” said niece Barbara Levie.

The chairman of Shure Microphones, Mrs. Shure died two years ago at age 95. Mrs. Shure supported CCH personally and through her company for 24 years, culminating in a recently received generous bequest. Continue reading Rose Shure gives legacy gift, supporting CCH’s HomeWorks

Bridgeview Bank Group donates $16,250 through ‘Hearts for the Homeless’

Associate Director of Development Claire Sloss (middle) accepting the check from Andrew Trippi (left) and Nicole Porrez (right) of Bridgeview Bank Group.

Bridgeview Bank Group presented the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless with a donation of $16,250 upon completion of its third “Hearts for the Homeless” program.

“We are grateful for the generous support of the Bridgeview Bank Group and the clients who participated in Hearts for the Homeless,” said Executive Director Doug Schenkelberg. “Together, you make a difference in the lives of people living in need.”  Continue reading Bridgeview Bank Group donates $16,250 through ‘Hearts for the Homeless’

The Ward family is getting a home of their own!

A new city housing program is helping 100 homeless families, including the Wards, secure homes of their own. The Families in Transition program was created after advocacy led by the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless through our signature campaign, HomeWorks.

“It will be better – it will be our own place,” says Robin Ward. “We can raise our kids the way we want to raise our kids. We don’t have to worry about living doubled-up with different people.” 

Continue reading The Ward family is getting a home of their own!

Thank you for a successful Giving Tuesday!

Many, many thanks for your generous support on Giving Tuesday, a global day of charitable giving held Nov. 28. This year, the Magnus Charitable Trust generously offered to match all donations made to the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, dollar-for-dollar up to our goal of $10,000.

By day’s end we more than tripled that goal: 232 donors generously gave $34,668, including donations received through Facebook. An additional 22 donors gave $3,386 for Giving Tuesday in the hours before and after Nov. 28. One-third of our 254 donors gave a first-time gift to CCH. Continue reading Thank you for a successful Giving Tuesday!

By Nov. 30: Join our Chicago Marathon ‘Team to End Homelessness’

CCH is proud to be an affiliate charity for the 2018 Bank of America Chicago Marathon on Sunday, October 7, 2018. We are recruiting our next Team to End Homelessness, offering a limited number of guaranteed entries to the race.

The Chicago Marathon’s team sign-up deadline is Thursday, Nov. 30.

Runners will be required to set a $1,000 minimum fundraising goal, to be raised online in conjunction with their race training.

Continue reading By Nov. 30: Join our Chicago Marathon ‘Team to End Homelessness’

Crain’s Chicago Business, Letter to the Editor: What city do we want to be?

By Doug Schenkelberg, CCH Executive Director

As was well-publicized over the past few weeks, the city of Chicago evicted a community of people experiencing homelessness under Lake Shore Drive viaducts on the North Side to make way for a construction project.

When the city set a date to evict the residents, the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless filed a lawsuit on behalf of the people in the encampments. Does CCH believe that crumbling bridges should not be rebuilt or that bike lanes are a bad idea or that people should be living on the street? No. We believe everyone has the right to housing, and that it is our collective responsibility to ensure that everyone can access that right.

Our motion to halt the eviction and delay the construction was denied by the judge, and the city evicted the people and disbanded the community. So rather than the city putting resources into transitioning people into permanent housing, resources were put into a line of police standing behind a row of tents, ready to pull them down from their new spot because the city is clearly determined to keep homelessness from being visible in Uptown.

In light of this situation and the fact that there are over 82,000 people in Chicago that experience homelessness in some form in a year, I ask the question—what city do we want to be?

Are we a city that wants to pour resources and effort into hiding homelessness, designing our public spaces to keep people without access to permanent housing from being in the public eye? Do we want to shrug our shoulders at the size of the problem and say it’s just too much?

Or do we want to be a city that makes ending homelessness a priority, one that believes our community is stronger when we provide real housing and support to those who need it?

This is our city and this is our choice. We can and should dedicate the scale of funding needed to end homelessness. This vision is not to say the city has done nothing to address homelessness, but rather to acknowledge it is not enough.

What happened at the viaducts will happen again. There are other tent encampments, other city projects on the drawing board. This situation is not an anomaly. So, I ask again, what kind of city do we want to be?

Farewell to Policy Specialist Jonathan Holmes

Jonathan Holmes in Springfield

It is bittersweet for me to announce that I will be leaving the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless at the end of August to join the staff at the Chicago Urban League.

I started my career at CCH almost three years ago as a Policy Fellow, where I worked on legislation removing barriers to employment in schools for people with criminal records. Continue reading Farewell to Policy Specialist Jonathan Holmes

Assessments begin for Chicago’s FIT housing program 

Assessments are underway for a new housing program that will assist homeless families with children enrolled at six Chicago Public Schools (CPS):

  • Ellington Elementary
  • Earle Elementary
  • Howe Elementary
  • Nicholson Elementary
  • L. Ward Elementary
  • Lowell Elementary

The new program is called Housing Support for CPS Families in Transition, or FIT.

Participating families will be those staying at shelters, as well as those who are doubled-up with friends or relatives due to economic hardship.  Continue reading Assessments begin for Chicago’s FIT housing program