Breaking down barriers to employment

Chicago’s Community Kitchens

Housed within the The Greater Chicago Food Depository, Chicago’s Community Kitchens is a culinary training and professional development program all in one. CCK’s 14-week training and job placement program is a free and accessible resource for the Chicago community. There are multiple ways to donate. The program welcomes monetary donations via their website. You can help them run their kitchen and work to end hunger in Cook County by giving to one their virtual food drives. Have a little leftover from Thanksgiving? Know others that do too? You can also organize your very own food drive, in-person or online. Check out their website for even more ways to volunteer and lend a hand.

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Curt’s Cafe

Curt’s Cafe aims to create opportunities and provide professional education to at-risk youth through their not-for-profit cafe business model, serving up a menu of coffee, pastries, sandwiches, catering, and more. Employing young adults in the community, Curt’s Cafe staff receive essential training and work experience they can use to jump-start their career. Curt’s Cafe has expanded to include a new location in Highland Park. Donations to Curt’s Cafe support a unique community based non-profit working towards building a better community, creating employment opportunities and delicious food all at once.

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Rebuilding Exchange

Rebuilding Exchange is a multi-layered social enterprise. A source of affordable reclaimed building materials for the Chicago community, Rebuilding Exchange also provides job-training in the construction industry to those with barriers to employment. Donations to Rebuilding Exchange will help them reach their 2025 goal of helping 10 thousand people with professional education, and diverting 30 million pounds of materials from landfills. A local powerhouse organization, Rebuilding Exchange is making waves in sustainable living while tearing down barriers to employment.

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Breaking down barriers to education

The Listening

If you had a room full of people willing to listen, what would you say? This question is what drives The Listening forward. Based in Lynchburg, Virginia, The Listening uses arts to enact change. Taking on the role of a safe creative space for youth and adults in their community, The Listening provides arts and social action education through their summer program Freedom School and year-round artist-led events. This Giving Tuesday, The Listening invites you to participate in A Room Full of People, their peer-to-peer campaign. Give directly to the campaign or promote it on your own. Contributions to The Listening are put towards Freedom School programming, events, and expanding their growing reach. You can also head to their online store for their signature t-shirts or donate directly through their website

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The Viola Project

At The Viola Project, Shakespearean theatre and female empowerment intersect to create social change. A stage historically reserved for men, The Viola Project uses Shakespeare to empower girls of today. Donations to The Viola Project will support this female-focused educational program’s scholarships, accessibility, development, teaching, and college apprenticeship initiatives. Head to their website or visit their Facebook page to support The Viola Project.

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Breaking down barriers to community connection

Exodus World Service

Inspired by Christian beliefs to help local neighbors, Exodus World Service answers the call to action by lending support to refugees as they transition into a new life. This year alone they served more than 2,000 refugees and trained close to 6,000 volunteers in the Chicago community. Donations to Exodus World Service help build various welcome packs for refugees and allow them to connect with congregations throughout Chicagoland and beyond. Donate here to help Exodus World Service end 2019 with an even greater impact, or become a volunteer to welcome refugees this holiday season.

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Parents for Peace and Justice

Parents for Peace and Justice are fighting to end the violence epidemic plaguing underprivileged neighborhoods of Chicago. Born out of one mother’s cry for help after the loss of her son, Parents for Peace and Justice offers anti-violence and therapy programming for victims of violence and their families. Donations to Parents for Peace and Justice will go toward supporting their youth programs, such as leadership sports camps for children in at-risk communities hosted with partners like Pro Sports Experience and the NFL Alumni Network, and community mental health resources.

Link to Donate

Women of Alabaster

Dedicated to serving victims of human trafficking, prostitution and drug abuse, Women of Alabaster helps women in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky transition from life on the streets by providing essential resources: shelter, food, and compassion. In addition to supporting current programs and aid, donations will help Women of Alabaster extend their reach and achieve their goal of opening a new shelter facility outside the city with enough room to provide for 20-30 women. They also accept in-kind donations and welcome volunteers.

Link to Donate