Chicago Cares is in the midst of our annual I Care campaign. It’s a time when we reflect on the amazing work you have helped us to accomplish and when we set our goals for our programs to continue to meet the needs of the community. As I analyze our impact data I am always amazed by what can be invested in our community in a year. It puts all of my experiences cooking breakfast for seniors, pulling weeds at a garden, leading a children’s activity, or the other projects I’ve attended this year into perspective. I have done so little compared to what we have done together. Your time, talents, passion, and compassion go a long way. With that said, the opportunities you have to serve your community through Chicago Cares wouldn’t be there without much-needed funding.

Today, I’m asking you to donate to Chicago Cares to support the programs you volunteer at or believe in. Here’s why:

So far in 2012…
• Volunteers have given positive one-on-one attention to children 9,260 times.
• Volunteer hours given at the Greater Chicago Food Depository have allowed partner organizations to purchase 43,000 pounds of additional food.
• 19,562 meals have been served to Chicagoans in need.
• There have been 14,350 visits made to seniors living in isolation.
• 989 adults received individualized attention in classroom settings with job skills, ESL coaching, tutoring, and more.
• 177,216 square feet have been landscaped at 7 neighborhood gardens, 4 nature area sanctuaries, 2 conservatories, and 2 parks.
• 635 murals have been painted and 86 mosaics created.
• 1,058 benches, bookcases, cubbies, planter boxes and more have been constructed.
• 475 classrooms and 86 hallways have been painted.
• 27,247 volunteer opportunities have been filled.
• And 87,662 volunteer hours have been served, which equals $1,872,460 worth of services donated to and invested in Chicago area schools and organizations.

What our school and organization partners have to say about it:

• 88% of partner organizations have increased the number of services they provide.
• 86% have increased the number of clients they’re able to serve.
• 94% have improved the quality of services they offer.
• 86% report that their projects wouldn’t get finished without Chicago Cares volunteers.

Wow. You have a lot to be proud of – and the year’s not even over yet!

I hope you’ll join me in taking this opportunity to be a part of making sure we can do this – and more – together again in 2013. None of this would be possible without both your time and the supplies and expertise provided by Chicago Cares. Your donation to the Chicago Cares I Care campaign will keep Chicago Cares programs going strong and allow you to stay invested in your community. Donate to your favorite area of service or to our general fund. Every dollar makes a difference.

I look forward to seeing you at a project soon.

In Service,

Wendy Neuert
Director of Ongoing Programs, Chicago Cares
Proudly invested in our community for nine years