In previous #108Days, the three of us have gotten together and decided on a single organization to contribute to and all of you have been extremely generous in your support. This year, rather than pick a single charity, we are each choosing a charity and will be splitting the donations between them.
I think many of us know someone who works in restaurants, bars, music venues, etc and endure the tough hours that come with that business. In the past 2 years, their lives have taken on additional turmoil with the uncertainty of these industries. All of these elements lead to a lot of bad outcomes for these great people. I had the fortune of meeting Jamie Duffy, who this charity is run in honor of, and he was not only a great musician but also a really nice guy. I still remember waking up to the soul crushing social media posts in 2012 when Jamie passed away. This charity has dedicated itself to preventing that for so many other people and I am thankful it exists for our friends and family members who need it.
My charity is Felines & Canines on the north side of Chicago. I’m a big fan of supporting animal shelter charities and I feel like the small spots don’t always get the attention and cash they could really use. That being said, I have personally decided to match every dollar that yous donate on your own to this charity through the end of January, up to $2,500. Just screenshot any donation you make on your own to let me know and at the end of the month, imma match it. This charity is special to me, because roughly 20 years ago, my wife and I adopted our since deceased boy Bailey there. His picture is below. I hope to help fund someone else’s Bailey.
While looking for a charity that I wanted to support this year, I considered many. I, like the other guys, wanted to support something close to my heart, but also a smaller independent place that your money might make more of a difference. I also consider what their rating is on Charity Navigator, which is where I found CYP. They have a rating of 97.37% using almost 88% of their donations for the programs they provide. That’s pretty amazing. Once I read this blurb, I was sold…
Chicago Youth Programs believes in the pursuit of equity and access on behalf of each of our youth. We are reminded everyday how vital it is for young people of color to be allowed to participate and have learned that this participation must come in the form of equitable access to: Quality education, comprehensive healthcare, skill development, and career opportunity. To that end, our program model reflects what 3 ½ decades has taught us: Poverty impacts the whole child, so we purpose to serve the whole child.
CYP is investing in the future, for real. In 2021 they welcomed in 60 new youth from 40 families into their programs, bringing them to well over 500 young people served by their efforts in 2021.
We were also busy innovating as a result of listening to our young people, to make sure we were offering what they need and want. Accordingly, we added programs like Public Speaking 101, Fast & Fit Training, and Science Is Fun (STEM) – our small effort to help raise up the next generation of entrepreneurs, engineers, and enthusiasts!
About The Author
Section 108 Row 13, Bassist for Barren Plains, Acclaimed drunkard