Who Are The Organizations?

Images collected from grassroots organizations’ websites. Collage made by Caitlin Loi.

Grassroots Organizing in Chicago:

Chicago Area Project (CAP) 

→ The CAP was founded in 1930 by a sociologist from the University of Chicago, who believed that every neighborhood could reduce violence by improving community life. One of the CAP’s goals is to improve the neighborhood climate to encourage improvements for young people, including increasing educational achievement.

BUILD Chicago

→ BUILD was founded in 1969 and has a mission to engage at-risk youth in the schools and on the streets to encourage pro-social behavior and reduce negative behaviors. As such, BUILD works to help students realize their educational and career potential, as well as contribute positively to their communities.

Voices of Youth in Chicago Education (VOYCE) 

→ VOYCE is a youth organizing collaborative for education and racial justice led by students. One of their big campaigns is #GoodKidsMadCity, a movement created by students in Chicago, DC, and Baltimore to uplift their own struggles. A main part of #GoodKidsMadCity is the fight for investment in wrap-around services in school, particularly services which help students deal with trauma and mental health issues.

Blocks Together (BT)

→ BT is a membership based community organizing group in the West Humboldt Park (WHP) neighborhood in Chicago. Founded in 1995, BT focuses its work on issues concerning youth, education, and economic prosperity. The youth portion of their campaign is focused on creating safer learning environments for the WHP neighborhood kids; BT stands against the school-to-prison pipeline and advocates for greater resources in failing schools.

Action Now 

→ Action Now’s mission is to build power in low-income Black communities via focused efforts on community based leadership, direct action, and civic engagement. Their vision is to create safe, stable communities in which residents have access to living wage jobs, quality education, and affordable housing. Their violence prevention campaign centers itself on combating neighborhood violence and partnering with Police Commanders to collaboratively address the problems.

Grassroots Organizing Elsewhere in USA:

Parent Action Committee (Bronx, NY) 

→ The PAC is a multicultural group of parents and community members dedicated to improving the quality of education for all children in New York City, specifically in the Bronx. Their School Safety Campaign aims to disrupt the School-to-Prison Pipeline by reducing suspensions, arrests, court summons, and violence in schools.

Gwinnett SToPP (Atlanta, GA) 

→ This organization is a parent-driven, community-centered partnership approach to dismantling the school to prison pipeline in Gwinnett County, GA. The mission of Gwinnett SToPP is to build and strengthen relationships with the community in two constructive ways: parent/community advocacy training and policy-change facilitation.

Padres & Jovenes Unidos (Denver, CO)

→ Padres & Jovenes Unidos is a multi-issue organization led by people of color. Their mission is focused on educational equity, racial justice, immigrant rights and quality healthcare for all. They believe that education is a right, not a privilege, and their campaign to end the school to prison pipeline works to empower communities and hold all schools accountable to providing equitable education.

Project Longevity (CT)

→ Project Longevity is a Community and Law Enforcement initiative to reduce serious violence in New Haven, Bridgeport, and Hartford, CT. Focused efforts in Community Involvement, Social Services, and Focused Policing work to positively affect community members, combat violence, and aid those who wish to exit the gang lifestyle.