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Groups Fighting To Find Stable Housing For Chicago Kids Get $500K From Youth Homeless Innovation Fund

Eight nonprofits will be among the groups receiving money to help young people experiencing housing instability.

Alternatives Inc.'s Restorative Justice team. The group trains people to be peace ambassadors.
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CHICAGO — The Youth Homeless Innovation Fund is giving $420,000 to eight nonprofits to help young people.

Grants of $15,000-$210,000 will help nonprofits from around Chicago try “new and creative efforts” to help young people who are homeless or who are experiencing housing instability, according to the project, which is being funded by the Polk Bros. Foundation and The Crown Family.

More than 15,000 unaccompanied young people are experiencing homelessness in Chicago, according to a 2017 estimate from the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless.

One of the nonprofits, the Brave Space Alliance, will use its grant to ensure gender-nonconforming people of color are supported as the city responds to youth homelessness, according to the fund. Another nonprofit, called Alternatives Inc., will train and pay people to be peace ambassadors who will implement restorative justice practices among groups that help young people experiencing homelessness.

In all, the foundation will give away $500,000, with $80,000 also being invested by the fund to help the Chicago Continuum of Care apply for federal funding and to bring the A Way Home America 100-Day Challenge to Chicago. The 100-Day Challenge is meant to spur innovation to end homelessness among young people.

The nonprofits receiving funding:

  • Alternatives Inc.
  • Brave Space Alliance
  • Chicago Coalition for the Homeless
  • Howard Brown Health and the Broadway Youth Center with various partners
  • Inspiration Corporation
  • One Roof Chicago
  • Samuel Dewitt Proctor Conference
  • Young Invincibles

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