Emergency Supplemental Victims' Fund
Last Updated on 10/10/2023
The City of Chicago’s Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund (ESVF) pilot provides financial assistance in set amounts to survivors and their families to alleviate the immediate financial impacts of fatal and non-fatal shooting incidents. Launched in December 2022, the pilot's goal is to combat the immediate financial impacts and trauma inflicted on those who experience loss from gun violence.
Financial assistance through the City’s Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund is available until funds are depleted to:
- City of Chicago residents* who have experienced gunshot injuries in West Garfield Park, East Garfield Park, Englewood, West Englewood, or New City, on or after January 1, 2023, provided they are not detained by law enforcement.
- City of Chicago families who lost a loved one to gun violence on or after January 1, 2023 in any of the designated neighborhoods.
*The program is open to anyone who lives in Chicago, regardless of immigration status.
Types of Expenses
The maximum amount of funding a victim can receive is $2,000 per incident. The maximum amount of funding available in the case of a fatal shooting victimization is $3,500. The types of expenses covered by the Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund include:
The next of kin or the proxy for the fatally injured victim can apply for up to $1,500 towards funeral expenses. The next of kin or proxy will have to complete an application with the Victim Advocate to receive funds.
The direct victim, next of kin, or proxy for the victim can apply for up to $1,000 for basic needs expenses immediately following an incident of gun violence. Basic needs expenses can be applied toward wage loss, rent and utilities, groceries, uninsured medical expenses, mental healthcare and support, childcare, or other relevant expenses.
Relocation expenses are up to $1,000 are available to any household where the victim, fatal or nonfatal, resides and, if applicable, for the household where the gunshot incident occurred, resulting in the need for safe temporary or permanent relocation.
The Community Safety Coordination Center's 15 High Priority Community Areas are:
- Auburn Gresham
- Chicago Lawn
- East Garfield Park*
- Greater Grand Crossing
- Humboldt Park
- New City*
- North Lawndale
- South Lawndale
- South Shore
- West Englewood*
- West Garfield Park*
- West Pullman
* Community areas where the Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund is currently focused.
Frequently Asked Questions
Firearm incidents that result in a fatal or non-fatal gunshot wound.
Currently, incidents in five community areas qualify for the program: East Garfield Park, West Garfield Park, Englewood, West Englewood, and New City.
Unfortunately, no. The 2023 pilot program is designed to serve individuals injured by a penetrative bullet wound during the 2023 calendar year. This pilot runs until funds are depleted so we encourage individuals to submit as early as possible.
Yes, anyone who lives in Chicago is eligible to apply, regardless of immigration status. State ID is not required to prove Chicago residence.
Yes, each victim is entitled to apply for their expenses. However, relocation expenses are only available once per household, per incident.
An applicant must work with a Victim Advocate to complete an application for the Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund. While Victim Advocates determine initial eligibility, ultimately all applications are accepted and approved at the discretion of the CSCC’s reviewing body. The CSCC project manager notifies the Victim Advocate of approval or denial within 7 days. If the application is denied, the CSCC project manager provides an explanation and, if applicable, what is required to improve the application to meet approval criteria. Approved applicants receive funding directly from the Victim Advocate organization within 14 days. A check is the preferred method of disbursement, but if funding is ever disbursed to an applicant in the form of a preloaded, non-reloadable card, a form documenting receipt of these funds is required.
No, at this time all applicants must work with a Victim Advocate from the appropriate eligible community area in order to apply.
There are three scenarios in which an individual may be eligible for relocation expenses:
- Direct victims of gun violence who qualify for the Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund are automatically eligible.
- If the qualifying incident is fatal, the cohabitant(s) of the direct victim is eligible for relocation expenses.
- The resident(s) of the home where the incident of gun violence occurred is also eligible for relocation.
The applicant must meet eligibility criteria for relocation. If approved, the applicant will receive relocation services totaling up to $1,000 booked for them directly by the victim advocate agency. These funds may be put towards temporary or permanent relocation, which includes but is not limited to a hotel stay, short or long-term housing, or moving expenses. Relocation expenses may be disbursed only once per household for qualifying incidents of gun violence.
Proof of residence for the applicant and the direct victim (if not the applicant) are required to apply. (Examples include license, utility bill, lease, piece of mail, City Schools ID, HMIS form. See all available options to establish proof that you live in Chicago.)
No other documents are required to apply, but some documents are required after-the-fact:
- For funeral funds, a quote or receipt for funeral expenses is required within three weeks of application approval
- For relocation funds, a copy of a new lease, a written statement from a landlord, receipts from moving expenses, or a nonrefundable booking confirmation or receipt from a hotel/Airbnb
The Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund staff aims to review applications as soon as possible but holds that decisions will be made within seven days of submission. Following approval notice, it is the expectation that the victim advocate agencies disburse all funds within two weeks or book relocation services within three weeks.
Within our 15 priority communities, Greater Garfield Park and Greater Englewood experienced the greatest number of gun violence incidents per number of residents, or rate, in 2022 and were selected to be included in this pilot program. Recognizing that the Latinx community also experiences high rates of gun violence, the ESVF program is being piloted in the predominantly Latinx community of New City.
The pilot program will run through the first quarter of 2023 or until funds are depleted. Program expansion may occur later in 2023, following the conclusion and evaluation of the pilot phase.
Yes, you will still be eligible to apply for all funding sources. The CSCC recommends that you apply for all available funding.
If you or a loved one suffered an incident of gun violence but are ineligible for the Emergency Supplemental Victims Fund pilot program, you may still be eligible to receive assistance from the State of Illinois's Crime Victims Funding at https://ag.state.il.us/victims/cvc.html.