More than 750 guests attended Urban Initiatives’ sixth annual Soccer Ball fundraiser on January 27th at Chicago’s River East Art Center. It was an enchanted evening of mingling for many Chicago professionals, young and old alike, who were swaying to the cool sounds of DJ Duncan and devouring the innovative culinary concoctions and specialty cocktails of J&L Catering. Additional delectable treats flowed thanks to event sponsors Goose Island, Beam, Storck and Cabot. The event broke the Urban Initiatives' previous records for attendance and corporate/private sponsorships, and raised more than $250,000 for its health and education soccer programs.
On Friday, October 7th, Urban Initiatives players from Libby, Walsh, Jenner and Prieto schools got to meet Mayor Emanuel and film a TV commercial! The Mayor's Office reached out to the Urban Initiatives team and asked us if we wanted to invite some of our student athletes to film a promotion for Good Morning America. We said “YES!” of course.
Several of our schools are on a two week fall break right now, and we recruited some of our soccer champs from these schools to spend part of their vacation hobnobbing with the mayor and getting their faces on TV!
While he was shaking the kids' hands, Mayor Emanuel commented, "This is my favorite part of the job!"
Stay tuned for info on where you can see the video of our students and Mayor Emanuel shouting “From Chicago!” for Good Morning America.
WomenOnCall.org does amazing work in connecting dedicated, professional women to volunteer opportunities with Chicago community organizations. One of the incredible women that volunteers for Urban Initiatives as a result is Jessica Rio. Jessica started volunteering with us in December of 2008 as a grant editor. She has made a lasting impact on Urban Initiatives and we are thrilled to have her as part of our team. Click here to read the full spotlight on Jessica.
Reporter for the Chicago Catholic News, Katie Drews, writes about the UI Founders' commitment to service and their application of their high school's motto - "Men for Others" - to their every day life.
Ms. Drews accompanied the UI founders and participants to a Chicago Fire game this summer. Her article highlights her experiences at the game as well as the overall impact of the Work to Play Program. Click here to read the full article.
The Medill Reports reports on the Urban Initiatives program and the value of our health education curriculum. Read the full story & watch the video.
The Chicago Sun-Times profiled Urban Initiatives Executive Directors Jim Dower and Dan Isherwood for their article "50 People Who Make Chicago a Better Place". Read the full story ››
The Chicago Tribune visted Jenner Academy to report on the Work to Play Program.
"Somehow along the way, Coach 'Ish' and Coach 'D' stumbled on this unlikely equation: Inner-city kids plus soccer plus unswerving dedication equals promise, squared. Add a chance to be some scary odds, besides." Read the full story [PDF]