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Give Chicago

Your year-end guide to philanthropy

Alzheimer’s Association Illinois Chapter

More than 5 million Americans, including an estimated 220,000 people in Illinois, are living with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia. By 2025, as many as 260,000 Illinoisans will have Alzheimer’s disease.

The Alzheimer’s Association Illinois Chapter serves as the state’s leading health organization making strides in care, support, and research. The Alzheimer’s Association is committed to educating, advocating, and providing hope locally and nationally to those affected by this heartbreaking disease.

Our advocacy efforts helped secure the largest increase in federal Alzheimer’s disease research funding in history. Our request for a $400 million increase has been included in the FY17 funding bill—driving us closer to the $2 billion dollars that NIH scientists say we need annually to defeat this disease.

The Alzheimer’s Association has invested over $350 million into active research projects, including the World Wide Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, the IDEAS study, and the Global Alzheimer’s Association Interactive Network.

Staying at the peak of cutting edge research, the association offers free educational programs, a 24/7 helpline, support groups, and Care Navigation Programs—which connects trained social workers with families to create care plans, immediately after a diagnosis or as the family needs changes. Our services are offered wherever and whenever help is needed through telephone, teleconferences and webinars, both live and recorded.

“I attended an Alzheimer’s Association support group,” one caregiver* said. “I am ever so grateful for my facilitator’s dedication and time. I am comforted by the knowledge this group will be in my place of solace on this journey.”

Please join us. With your support, donation and contribution, we can make a world without Alzheimer’s, a reality.

For more information, please visit: alz.org/illinois.

*For the protection of this person – their identity is kept anonymous.

Greater Chicago Food Depository

The Greater Chicago Food Depository, Chicago’s food bank, is a nonprofit food distribution and training center providing food for hungry people while striving to end hunger in our community. The Food Depository makes a daily impact across Cook County with a network of 700 pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, mobile programs, children’s programs, older adult programs and innovative responses that address the root causes of hunger. Last year, the Food Depository distributed more than 71 million pounds of fresh produce, shelf-stable food, dairy products and meat, the equivalent of 164,000 meals every day.

The Food Depository’s programs for children ensure that youth in Cook County have access to nutritious food year-round through market-style distributions in schools and after-school and summer meal programs. The Food Depository also serves the needs of older adults by providing a meal service and market-style distribution of healthy foods that meet the dietary needs of this population. With over 13,000 veterans in Cook County living below the poverty line, the Food Depository’s pantries at the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center and Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital provide assistance for those who served our nation.

To address the root causes of hunger, the Food Depository offers Chicago’s Community Kitchens, a free foodservice job training program for unemployed and underemployed adults in Cook County that prepares students for productive careers in foodservice.

The Food Depository advocates for anti-hunger policies and partners with community health care providers to train physicians and staff that screen patients for food insecurity and connect those in need with nutritious food.

Support this mission by making a donation, volunteering or lifting your voice to help end hunger in our community.

For more information, visit chicagosfoodbank.org.

Take a Stand Center at

Illinois Holocaust Museum

The Museum’s world premiere multi-million-dollar Take a Stand Center, an immersive exhibition with a forward-looking emphasis on multiple areas of social justice, is now open at Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center.

Furthering the museum’s mission of empowering and enabling people to stand up for humanity, the Take a Stand Center was created to move visitors from knowledge to inspiration to action, with the 4,000-square-foot Center comprised of three interactive galleries:

• World-premiere Abe & Ida Cooper Survivor Stories Experience utilizes groundbreaking technology to enable ‘conversation’ with 13 recorded Holocaust survivors (seven from Chicagoland) via 3-D holography. The technology was developed by USC Shoah Foundation’s New Dimensions in Testimony program in association with the museum.

• The Goodman Upstander Gallery extends messages beyond the Holocaust to showcase 40 courageous “Upstanders,” striving in the areas of civic, social, economic and environmental rights. Local Upstanders include Tim King, Roberto Rivera, Henry Cervantes, and Theaster Gates.

• The action-oriented Take a Stand Lab provides hands-on tools for affecting change and becoming an Upstander, including a toolkit for visitors to take home.

Augmenting the three primary galleries is the Act of Art gallery of fine art and photography which explores historical events from artists’ perspectives and how art has the power to transform how we see the world.

“The opening of the Take a Stand Center is a major milestone not only for our Museum and the Midwest, but for our world,” said Museum CEO Susan Abrams. “Our Museum team is proud to be leading the way in using the history and lessons of the Holocaust and the inspiration of Upstanders, to equip our community, teachers, students, and the public to take a stand for humanity.”

“Illinois Holocaust Museum’s mission and message against hatred and intolerance are as relevant and vital today as they have ever been,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “I am confident this center will empower and encourage more courageous people around the world to stand up and speak out against racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia and bigotry in all its ugly forms.”

Learn more about the Center at takeastandcenter.com.


Philanthropist Sally Downey: ‘JourneyCare Gives the Greatest Gift’

I learned a valuable lesson after a lifetime of working in health care: every patient deserves to live life fully, for as long as they can.

That idea connected me to hospice almost 40 years ago when it was a pioneering health service in Chicago. Now, this philosophy keeps me connected to JourneyCare as a member of its Board of Directors, as a donor, and volunteer.

JourneyCare is a nonprofit agency that provides expert, compassionate care to patients of all ages facing the end of life and serious illness—care that treats the whole person and helps them live each day to the fullest. Its hospice and palliative care programs reaches nearly 3,000 patients and families in need each day in my hometown of Chicago, our suburbs, and throughout northern Illinois. JourneyCare is also one of the only agencies serving children in the Chicago region who need pediatric hospice and palliative care.

Thanks to the help of generous supporters, JourneyCare has never turned anyone away because of inability to pay. Last year, JourneyCare provided more than $6 million in charity care, unfunded, and underfunded services to families.

In addition to world-class medical care, JourneyCare patients can access specialized services. These programs include music therapy, pet therapy, and massage. Families also receive vital grief support, and children and teens who lost a loved one can join programs like Camp Courage and BraveHeart workshops at no cost. These services are supported by your donations and not covered by insurance of any kind.

JourneyCare ultimately gives the greatest gift to patients and their families by treating them with respect and dignity as they face serious and life-threatening illness. Please join in helping families who need care by using by visiting journeycare.org/gift. At their most critical time, you make the difference.

United Way of Metro Chicago

Building A Stronger Chicago Region

Chicagoans have a great love for our neighborhoods across the city and suburbs. We have many wins to celebrate, and many reasons to be proud. But, there are serious issues impacting our region that are easy to ignore when you’re not faced with them daily; issues like school dropout rates, poverty, access to health care, and violence. At United Way of Metro Chicago, we are taking on these complex issues.

We are fighting for the health, education, financial stability, and safety of every person in every neighborhood across the region. We all win when communities are healthy, when kids succeed in school, when families have a stable income, and when people in crisis have access to emergency services like food, shelter, and safety. We win when we LIVEUNITED to make life better for individuals, families, and neighborhoods.

The challenges facing our community are real, but fixing them is not out of reach. When you give, volunteer, or become an advocate, you join a group of game changers, problem solvers, and difference makers working together to find solutions that will transform lives and build a stronger Chicago region.

This is OUR city and change doesn’t happen alone. We have one life. We are one community. And to live better, we must LIVEUNITED.

Join the fight to build stronger neighborhoods for a stronger Chicago region at LIVEUNITEDchicago.org.

Alliance for the Great Lakes

Water is a unifier. We depend on it for our health, economy, and recreation — whether it’s a day at the beach or running through the sprinkler. We’re fortunate to have the world’s largest surface freshwater source in our backyard: the Great Lakes.

At the Alliance for the Great Lakes, we’re committed to keeping the Great Lakes healthy and beautiful for generations to come. That means fighting for policies to protect the lakes from invasive species and harmful pollution, involving 15,000 volunteers in beach cleanups, and engaging more than 60,000 students in Great Lakes education across the region every year.

Our water is a shared value that has the power to unify. But, we have more work to do before our water is safe, clean, and accessible to everyone in our region. This work is only possible when we come together, and we want you to be a part of it.

Visit greatlakes.org to learn how you can join us to protect the Great Lakes.

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

Blood cancer survivors Sebastian Milka and Jenna Snyder were named the 2017 Boy and Girl of the Year of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s (LLS) Illinois Chapter. With their titles, these terrific young adults kept the 2017 Man & Woman of the Year candidates inspired and motivated throughout the ten-week campaign.

At age six, Sebastian was diagnosed with T-cell leukemia. Jenna was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia at age three. Throughout years of rigorous treatment, they remained positive and became heroes to their families and everyone they encountered. Today, they are both cancer free.

The 2017 Man & Woman of the Year candidates would like to thank Sebastian and Jenna for sharing their generous spirits and supporting their fundraising efforts that resulted in a record-breaking $930,000 for LLS’s goal to create a world without blood cancer.

LLS exists to find cures and ensure access to treatments for blood cancer patients. For more information, visit lls.org.

Respiratory Health

While I breathe, I hope

Lori Baldwin leads a full and active life. When she’s not busy with trial proceedings as a court stenographer, she’s keeping up with her four children and two dogs. Lori also enjoys traveling, reading, and gardening. Unsurprisingly, she is able to keep up because she’s passionate about exercise. Last February, Lori pushed her fitness to the test at the 20th Anniversary Hustle Up the Hancock.

Lori plans to climb in 2018, not just for the challenge, but to help raise awareness for a great cause. In her life, friends and family have sadly passed away from lung disease.

Her dear friend had been a smoker throughout her life and attempted to quit countless times with great difficulty. Eventually, she was diagnosed with lung cancer and needed a lung removed.

Lori finds inspiration and motivation to climb 1,632 stairs for her own life in the Latin phrase dum spiro spero, which translates to, “While I breathe, I hope.” For her, it represents never losing hope for a better future and never losing the drive to achieve your goals—even if they’re 94 flights up. For more information, visit lungchicago.org.

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