Giving Back: The Soul of Philanthropy Reframed and Exhibited

Presented by the Chicago African Americans in Philanthropy (CAAIP)

February 1—April 30, 2023

Chicago Cultural Center, Michigan Avenue Galleries, 1st Floor East

Chicago Cultural Center  >  Visual Art Program  >  Exhibitions  >  Past Exhibitions  >  Giving Back: The Soul of Philanthropy


Darian's Heart, The Soul of Philanthropy illuminates the human impulse to show compassion, to progress, to see fairness, to connect with others, to repair and to love.

(Credit: Darian's Heart, The Soul of Philanthropy illuminates the human impulse to show compassion, to progress, to see fairness, to connect with others, to repair and to love.)

(click on image to enlarge)


Chicago African Americans in Philanthropy (CAAIP) hosts the groundbreaking national exhibition that explores the African-American philanthropy experience and giving traditions grounded in faith, mutuality, responsibility and social justice. The exhibition illustrates Black philanthropy through innovative and interactive presentations, including luminous photographic prints on metal, iPad kiosks with digital apps featuring music, poetry, photography, narratives and more. It comprises over a dozen vignette stories and more than 50 black-and-white images that depict facets of giving across generations. Elements of the exhibition invite visitors of all ages to share their own stories of giving and to contribute to “reframing portraits of philanthropy”. Images and stories composing the exhibit are from the book “Giving Back: A Tribute to Generations of African American Philanthropists” by author Valaida Fullwood and photographer Charles W. Thomas Jr.

CAAIP will host corresponding public programs, allowing groups to explore a broad range of topics related to philanthropy, including ‘A Conversation on Black Wealth Building and Extraction’, and ‘Everyday Philanthropy Standing in Our Truth’. To learn more about programs and forums, visit The Soul of Philanthropy Chicago website.


Developing Global Leaders: A Case Study

Friday, February 17, 3:30-5:30pm

Chicago Cultural Center, Learning Lab, 1st Floor South

Join this panel of youth leaders for a discussion on how they are developing leadership skills to positively transform and advance their community, nation, and world. Students who have participated in culturally responsive high-quality education grounded in real world experiences offered by Village Leadership Academy will share the impact of their travel exchanges with other children from a different country and how they are giving through volunteerism.


Community Quilting Bee

Saturday, February 18, 11am-1pm

Chicago Cultural Center, Learning Lab, 1st Floor South

In the tradition of African American ancestry, a community quilt will be created. The Needles and Threads Quilters Guild members will assist participants in creating a block that represents their giving. All materials needed to create a block will be provided. Blocks become the property of Chicago African Americans in Philanthropy (CAAIP). CAAIP reserves the right to include and/or display your block in the final philanthropic quilt.


Stay Connected

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Chicago Cultural Center

Admission is FREE
Open Daily, 10am–5pm
Exhibitions close 15 minutes before the building closes
(Closed Holidays)

Plan Your Visit

Find us:

Chicago Cultural Center
78 E. Washington St.
Chicago, IL 60602

Take CTA to Chicago Cultural Center

  • From the elevated lines: exit at Washington/Wabash and walk east.
  • From the subway: exit at Lake (Red Line) or Washington (Blue Line) and walk east.
  • Served by Michigan Avenue buses 3, 4, 19, 20, 26, 60, 66, 124, 143, 147, 151, 157 and Washington St. buses 4, J14, 20, 56, 66, 147

The Ida B. Wells Story

Tuesday, February 28, 4-5:30pm

Chicago Cultural Center, Claudia Cassidy Theater, 2nd Floor North

In celebration of Black History Month join a discussion of IDA B. WELLS, the award-winning documentary and website in WTTW’s CHICAGO STORIES series.

The documentary brings to life the Chicago investigative journalist, racial justice and equity activist, and suffragist as never before. Tim Russell, VP of Community Engagement and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at WTTW-WFMT, will moderate a panel conversation with the film’s Emmy Award-winning producer and writer Stacy Robinson and success coach and Ida B. Wells’ great grandson Dan Duster. The panel will discuss the trailblazer’s life and legacy in the context of journalism, voting, civil rights, policing in the Black Community, and more.

Presented in partnership with WTTW.


Panel Discussion - New School Grassroots Philanthropy: Yeah Youth

Friday, March 24, 3:30-5pm

Chicago Cultural Center, Millennium Park Room, 5th Floor South

Panelists: Village Leadership Academy Students, Jahkil Jackson of Project I Am

Register Online

It all starts with a spark of an idea to solve a societal problem. Through the power of sharing, individual and collective giving our youth are creating the change they want to see in our city. They are empowered to make decisions on projects of importance to them and secure funding to support the programs/initiatives. The brilliance of young people is showcased through triumphant efforts.


TSOP Chicago Community Celebration

Saturday, April 15, Noon-3pm

Chicago Cultural Center, Randolph Square, 1st Floor North

Join us as we celebrate the philanthropist in each of us, where guests will enjoy live music from the Chicago Sinfonietta as we prepare to close the event’s Chicago run at the end of April. Our featured Legends and Legacies philanthropists will be present for you to hear firsthand their personal stories.

Free and Open to the Public.


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