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Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced the start of One Summer Chicago 2015, the city’s summer jobs program, which keeps youth safe and engaged during the summer while providing valuable job training and work experience. Beginning today and continuing for six weeks, 24,000 youth aged 14 to 24 from neighborhoods across Chicago will work in areas such as urban agriculture, bike repair, outdoor forestry, and event at the Brookfield Zoo.
“One Summer Chicago is about providing our children with a better set of choices today so they can have a brighter future tomorrow,” said Mayor Emanuel. “I am proud that we are kicking off the largest summer jobs program in the history of Chicago today. It will help more Chicago children than ever before earn a paycheck but more importantly learn a set a values that will prepare them for greater success in school, college, career, and life.”
Through One Summer Chicago, participating youth complete six or more weeks of work or career programming, contributing their skills and talents to Chicago’s vibrant communities. Each year, City and County public agencies leverage their resources to provide the maximum number of high-quality work experiences for youth.
Since One Summer Chicago was launched in 2011, Mayor Emanuel has steadily increased the number of opportunities to keep youth safe and engaged each summer. The 24,000 jobs offered this summer are the most in the program’s history, up from 22,500 jobs just last year.
As part of the One Summer Chicago program, Mayor Emanuel created a special program called One Summer Chicago Plus to connect youth at a higher risk for violence with a 25-hour per week summer job, a mentor, cognitive behavioral therapy and social skill building. A comprehensive, peer-reviewed study published in Science Magazine in 2014 showed this program significantly reduced violent crime involvement among participants for at least 16 months after the it ended.
In February, Mayor Emanuel announced that Inner City Youth Empowerment, LLC, a private entity formed by Earvin Johnson and Mark and Kimbra Walter, is invest ing$10 million over two years to expand One Summer Chicago Plus. Through this expansion, the program will expand to serve 2,000 youth in 2015 and 3,000 youth in 2016.
DFSS leads One Summer Chicago in partnership with participating agencies including: Office of the City Treasurer, Chicago Department of Transportation, Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Housing Authority, After School Matters, Forest Preserves of Cook County, Brookfield Zoo, Chicago Public Libraries, City Colleges of Chicago, Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership, and Mayor’s Office of People with Disabilities. Notable private sector supporters include: and Inner City Youth Empowerment, LLC, Chicago Community Trust, Citi Foundation, Chicago Cares, Civic Leadership Foundation, University of Chicago Crime Lab, JPMorgan Chase, TCF Bank, Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund, TraceRoute, Bandit Park, and MHA Labs.
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