Mission: Chicago Coalition for the Homeless (CCH) organizes
and advocates to prevent and end homelessness based on our belief that housing is a human right in a just society.
Results: • CCH is the only organization in Chicago to run regular outreach at a variety of emergency shelters, transitional housing, SRO and street programs – 30 across the city each month, reaching more than 3,500 people per year.
• CCH is the only non-profit in Illinois crafting public policies that curb – and one day, can end – homelessness that hits low- and moderate-income families. We train and empower homeless people to advocate on all these issues.
• Ours is the only law office in Illinois dedicated solely to serving homeless people, with focus on children and teens turned away by public schools or denied school services. A youth attorney reaches out to unaccompanied youth living on their own, without family.
Geographic areas served: Chicago, Illinois
Programs: The law project (educational rights) (1997) protects the legal rights of people who are homeless, with half of casework focused on children and teens struggling to attend public school.
in the housing campaign, cch pairs advocacy with community organizing to spur development of affordable housing and shelter access. This includes "sweet home chicago," a citywide campagin managed by cch to address the needs of low wage families.
youth futures is a mobile legal aid clinic serving homeless and unaccompanied youth. Two attorneys represented 219 clients and outreach to 1,500 youth via school and drop-in programs.
Professional with expertise in this field
I had the pleasure of working for Chicago Coalition for the Homeless while in graduate school. The passion of the staff for their work alongside of and on behalf of the homeless people of Chicago is inspiring. They focus on creative and policy solutions to the problems affecting individuals facing a barrier of multitudes to housing, employment and self sufficiency. As I begin my career in the nonprofit sector I am constantly looking to CCH as a model organization.
The CCH is a special program because it is an agency that unbuttons its sleeves, gets its hands dirty, and does whatever it takes to effect the perniciousness of homelessness. CCH is a program that also directly involves the voices and experiences of those affected by homelessness and the lack of affordable housing to actually DO something to effect change. CCH organizes and does advocacy work in rich and poor communities and uses its resources effectively.
CCH facilitated a Community Organizing Training for a group of our student leaders in January that was both eye-opening, informative, and inspirational. I truly appreciated that a number of their staff shared in the facilitation, bringing with them a diverse wealth of experiences, perspectives, and practical skills. Thank you CCH!