Media advisory: Pastors & others deliver 700 more letters to restore homeless education and prevention grants

Who: 20 Chicago and suburban pastors, church members and homeless advocates

What: Protest and deliver another 700 letters to Gov. Quinn asking to restore state funds for homeless students and families

When: Monday, March 24 at 10 a.m.

Where: Thompson Center, 1st floor, 100 W. Randolph Street 

On Monday, 20 pastors, church members and homeless advocates from St. Charles, Aurora, Waukegan and Chicago – including Willow Chicago Church and St. Charles Episcopal Church – will protest and deliver 700 letters to Gov. Pat Quinn’s Chicago office.

The letters strongly urge Gov. Quinn to restore $3 million for grants to homeless school programs and $2 million for homeless prevention grants to families in the FY15 state budget.

CCH has already delivered 1,000 letters to Gov. Quinn. There is no indication that the funds will be restored in the governor’s upcoming budget plan.

In FY09, Illinois allocated $3 million in grants to fund homeless services in 36 school districts, but it has not provided any additional funding since then. Public schools could use the funds to provide transportation, waive school fees, and provide uniforms and school supplies. Funds can also be used to hire staff to work with homeless families and students at school.

The Illinois State Board of Education and the Chicago Public Schools identified a record 54,892 homeless students last school year.

The homeless prevention program provides one-time grants to keep struggling families in their homes. The grants can be used to pay rent, mortgage or utilities. Program funding is $4 million in FY14. More than 100,000 families have been helped since the state launched the CCH-proposed program in 2000.

A brief prayer vigil will lead the gathering. Also speaking will be two parents and two pastors. Afterward, a small delegation will deliver the letters to Gov. Quinn’s office.

For more information, contact organizer Jim Picchetti at