Blueprint for Change, Baseball, TA Update, and more
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May 26, 2016

Chase Challenge 2016

For the third consecutive year, Get IN Chicago is proud to be Chicago’s beneficiary for the JPMorgan Chase Corporate Challenge. Tonight, we will cheer on more than 27,000 participants and celebrate Chicago’s collective passion, creativity, and strength!

As a private funder with a public mission, Get IN Chicago brings a business mindset to the issue of violence.  We use a data-driven approach to funding, measuring, and strengthening programs across the city, and our donor partners include some of Chicago’s most influential and conscientious corporations. By advancing stronger organizations and stronger communities, we are creating a stronger Chicago.  

If you'll be at the Challenge, be sure to stop by our tent for hero photos and gear.  Everyone is on Team GIC tonight!  

Wherever you are tonight, we want to hear about your heroes!  
Tell us about your #CapeReady hero on Facebook or Twitter before, during, or after the race.  
WVON: On the Table Discussion 2016
As part of The Chicago Community Trust's On The Table celebration, Get IN Chicago Executive Director Toni Irving and Board of Directors Co-Chair Jim Reynolds participated in a live, on-air discussion with WVON 1690AM on May 10th.  Hosted by Marion Brooks of NBC-5 Chicago, the conversation also included Deputy Mayor Andrea Zopp, On The Table co-chair Mary Richardson-Lowry, and Eiran Feldman of First Insite Realty and Chatham Development Corp.

The group discussed youth, violence, and unifying communities throughout our city.  Topics included everything from neighborhood empowerment to job creation to policing in Chicago.  The speakers provided updates about a number of ongoing initiatives and posed questions that must be answered as we move forward.

“There are so many interesting personalities that have the spirit to drive change coming together," said Irving. "How can we build capacity so that communities can develop and implement their own solutions?"
Blueprint for Change: From Ideas to Collective Impact 
Tom Wilson, co-chair of the Get IN Chicago Board of Directors, delivered the keynote address at The Chicago Urban League's 2016 Summit Luncheon on May 2nd.  Speaking to more than 600 civic and community leaders, he described how GIC grew from an innovative idea to tackle youth violence  into a full-fledged organization focused on collective impact and systems change.

"We picked the name Get IN Chicago because of my daughter Hannah. She said my wife Jill and I were always talking about helping kids “get out” of bad neighborhoods," noted Wilson.  "Hannah said what we really need is for more people to “get into” these neighborhoods and make them better. That became our mantra: Get in, not out."
Over the past two years, GIC has awarded more than $19 million in grants to 60 organizations to support projects in mentoring, parent leadership, therapy, technical assistance, innovation, and more. With the support of the MacArthur Foundation, these grants have also enabled program measurement, evaluation, and analysis of these programs.

In his speech, Wilson outlined recommendations based on GIC findings to date: tailoring services according to youth risk level, exploring innovative approaches, expanding community and nonprofit capacity, and increasing measurement.

"We learned that even the best programs lessen their impact if they don’t treat the youth they serve as customers," said Wilson.  

For example, high-risk youth "need therapy but it needs to be packaged in a way that is emotionally and socially acceptable to them as customers, not as problems to be fixed... We need new approaches, new delivery systems and new rewards specifically targeted at acutely at-risk youth."

He also emphasized the pressing needs of acutely high-risk youth - young people who not only live in vulnerable communities but are also disconnected from school, jobs, and families.

"All of the children who live in Chicago’s most violent neighborhoods are at-risk in some way shape or form," said Wilson.  "They just do not all need the same type of help."

Wilson ended his speech with calls to action for nonprofits, funders, and companies.  

"As leaders, we need to do more. I need to do more. The kids that are dying are not black or white or rich or poor. They are our children. They belong to all of us," said Wilson. "... (but) you have the power to make this better. You have the expertise, resources and platforms to make a difference. This is why we are here, to help others achieve more meaning in their lives."

  • Full Speech - Tom Wilson at Blueprint for Change
  • Event Press Release - 5/3 Chicago Urban League’s Annual SUMMIT Luncheon Delivers Message of Hope for Youth, Features Chicago’s Young Innovator
Baseball is Back!
After a stellar first year in Englewood, the Englewood Police/Youth Baseball League will continue this summer - and be joined by a second league in North Lawndale.  Get IN Chicago awarded grants to Teamwork Englewood and BBF Family Services to coordinate two baseball-mentoring programs, which 
 aim to build trust between inner-city youth and the police. 

Get IN Chicago surveys of over 50 participants last year showed that youth improved their perceptions of police and their own ability to make a difference in their communities.  This year, Get IN Chicago plans to evaluate both leagues to measure improvements in perceptions of police among all 200 youth participants and changes in officer-coaches’ ability to work in partnership with youth.

“This program will provide a fun and safe activity for 200 young people this summer,” said Irving.  “But our greater hope is that the leagues will engender relationships and mindsets that last long after summer ends.”  
Opinion: Chicago's African American Community Is In Crisis
Congratulations to Get IN Chicago Board Member Sam Scott III, recently honored by The Chicago Council of Global Affairs with its 2016 Global Leadership Award.  Below is an excerpt from his call to action for the Chicago business community.
"If the Chicago black community issue were a business or a business problem, we would address it in a totally different way.

"First, we would set a goal or vision for the end state we desire. Next, we would put together a comprehensive strategy to reach that goal. We would set annual targets that we can measure and hold ourselves accountable to. We would provide the required resources, both financial and human, to get the job done. And we would provide a structure that would manage the whole thing.

"In a business context, the reward would be financial. In my scenario, the reward would be saving lives."
Programs Update: Technical Assistance

Get IN Chicago’s commitment to funding and measuring evidence-based programs continues to be linked to capacity building.  Our technical assistance partners work with grantees to achieve programmatic best practices and to strengthen their organizational infrastructure.  Learn more about the work of two of our partners below!

Support for CBT Grant Programs

“To date, all of the CBOs have made gains in their knowledge and capacity for evidence-informed implementation. Currently, the lessons we have learned from the technical assistance program are related broadly to agency readiness for intervention implementation and adjusting to work in a new setting."

- Lurie Children's Hospital
More on Lurie's work
Support for Mentoring Grant Programs

“Over the past few months, we facilitated five GIC mentor trainings and one Professional Learning Community (PLC) meeting for Get IN Chicago mentoring supervisors and directors... All mentor trainings and the PLC meeting benefited from 100% attendance and participation. We also successfully completed needs assessments and work plans with all seven of the mentoring programs based on best practices."

- Illinois Mentoring Partnership
More on IMP's work
Learn more about other technical assistance providers and their work with Get IN Chicago.
Feel Good Friday: Children's Home + Aid
“One of our highschool students, Felicia*, was struggling with intense feelings of anger toward a teacher.  During a group session, she talked about beating up the teacher or destroying the windows of her vehicle.

“In order to prevent Felicia from becoming violent, our therapist focused on regulating her emotions with the SPARCS model (Structured Psychotherapy for Adolescents Responding to Chronic Stress).  She walked the group through the MAKE A LINK exercises. MAKE A LINK helps students learn alternative communication methods for dealing with individuals, especially having difficult conversations.

“Through role play and MAKE A LINK, Felicia acted out a conversation that she would like to have with her teacher. When she finished, she commented that she had learned a lot.  She also believed that her new skills would help her speak with her teacher without becoming aggressive.”


*name changed

Children’s Home + Aid is currently providing cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) services to 208 students across eight elementary and high schools in Englewood and West Englewood with their CBT grant.  Students in the program receive at least 12 group therapy sessions focusing on dealing with trauma and reducing aggression.  Individual therapy and family services are also available to students.  Children’s Home + Aid is also currently using a Get IN Chicago grant for its winning Chicago Design Competition program with Youth Advocate Programs.

Reading Corner

Catch up on what we're reading at the office.
Get INvolved - What's Next

Thursday, May 26: JPMorgan Chase Challenge - Get IN Chicago is this year's beneficiary organization!
Best of Luck!
Get IN Chicago recently bid farewell to two of our fabulous interns - Pete Stypa and Cristina Bedolla!  

Pete started his tenure with GIC last summer, providing assistance in data, compliance, and research to operations and grants management.  This summer, he has law internships in North Carolina and Dubai before returning to Chicago to complete programs for his J.D. and MBA.  

Cristina worked with us over the course of her sophomore year at Loyola, assisting with programs, research, administration, and special events.  A member of the Gannon Scholars Leadership program, she is currently pursuing a joint BSW-MSW in social work.  

Both Pete and Cristina's internships were made possible through generous support from the Alvin H. Baum Family Fund.
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