December 2, 2012

Mayor Emanuel Announces $1 Million Investment in Youth Jobs and Expansion of Effective Community Programs With NATO Legacy Funds

New Investment into “Youth Working for Success” Initiative Will Provide 400 More Youth Jobs, After-School Programs and Specialized Mentoring Services

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced today that $1 million in NATO legacy funds will be invested in a new initiative – Youth Working for Success – to help put 400 more young people on a better path. This initiative is a continuation of the Mayor’s commitment to investing NATO legacy funds into youth jobs while expanding the most effective and successful strategies in the city’s Community Anti-Violence and Restoration Efforts (CARE).  An RFP will be issued in January, encouraging community organizations and service providers to participate in providing proven strategies, like youth jobs, specialized mentoring and other services in support of the City’s initiatives.

“I am delivering on a promise to allocate funds to expand the most effective and successful community based strategies,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Violence is one of the most difficult and painful challenges we face as a city. These new funds are being invested strategically to target youth who typically are missed through traditional after school and summer jobs programs but whose chances of involvement in future violence are greatly increased without quality program interventions.”

This additional funding will expand CARE’s efforts for the prevention, intervention and response to the many risk factors that destabilize communities and contribute to violence.  For each strategy, the City has committed to dedicate resources to manage the effort, seek public and private funding to test the approach, and eventually allocate funds to expand the most effective and successful strategies. 

As part of the CARE initiative, a number of anti-violence and prevention strategies have launched during the past year, including “wrap-around” programs that prevent crime from returning to street corners after police clear drug markets; “One Summer Chicago,” which provides jobs and activities for children and at-risk youth; and “Re-engagement Centers,” designed to return high school dropouts to the school system.

From the outset of the City’s planning, Mayor Emanuel committed that Chicago taxpayers would not be responsible for any of the costs associated with hosting the NATO Summit. Federal funds and private funds raised by the NATO host committee were used to pay for the costs associated with hosting the summit, and those costs came in under budget. The remaining private funds are being used where they are needed most – directly in Chicago’s communities, to the direct benefit of Chicago’s residents.

In October, Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced that $6.5 million in NATO legacy and Chicago Park District capital funds would be invested in neighborhood and transformative park projects across the city.

Today’s announcement of an additional $1 million will bring the total new investments in targeted violence prevention job programs for youth to $4 million.


# # #