The Issue: Winter for Underserved Individuals
Last winter was the coldest four-month period on record in Chicago, and the thermometers are already dropping again. When temperatures dip, the city’s low-income residents face a dilemma: either avoid work and school, or go out in the cold without protective clothing—hats and gloves—and risk frostbite or hypothermia. By providing these essential supplies to local families, the community can eliminate that choice.
The Campaign: Distributing Gloves and Hats
All donations to this Grassroots campaign will be used by Chicago Cares to keep Chicago’s low-income residents warm this winter. For every $10 raised, Chicago Cares can provide one pair of gloves and a hat for one underserved person as part of its inaugural, city-wide, Warm Up Chicago Drive, distributing this clothing through its extensive nonprofit network. Hats and gloves are usually the first items to run out at shelters and community centers, and more than 11,000 have been already requested by 20 nonprofits across the city.
Every year, Chicago Cares creates opportunities for more than 30,000 volunteers to impact their community. More than 250 monthly service programs identify areas of critical need and funnel people who then fill that need—and it's a model that's been working. Since its inception in 1991, volunteers have completed more than 1.4 million hours of service in projects ranging from hunger to eduction to job-readiness. They teach students how to create fine art at local elementary schools, clean up playgrounds and parks, and serve dinners to seniors living with a low income. By completing these projects, not only can people support people, they can strengthen their own connection with communities across the city.