CHICAGO, Ill. -- In honor of National Gun Violence Awareness Month and Wear Orange Weekend, the Chicago Sports Alliance (CSA) announced it will provide a total of $1.5 million in grants to six local organizations that directly address the issue of gun violence in Chicago.

The CSA was established in December 2017 with support from the Robert R. McCormick Foundation as a collaborative effort between the Chicago Bears, Blackhawks, Bulls, Cubs and White Sox to lend financial support and team resources to local, evidence-based solutions to gun violence.

The six selected 2024 Chicago Sports Alliance grant recipients include:
1. Enlace Chicago with New Life Centers of Chicagoland and Little Village Youth Safety Network Organizations: Enlace Chicago, a community-based organization located in the Little Village neighborhood, partners with neighborhood-based organizations in Little Village, including New Life Centers of Chicagoland and members of the Little Village Youth Safety Network, to provide wraparound services to help address community violence and support youth development. 

2. The Chicago Fund for Safe and Peaceful Communities at Chicago Community Trust: Housed at the Chicago Community Trust, The Fund provides micro-grants (less than $10K) to organizations in communities most impacted by violence and whose operating budgets are under $500K. Grants support activities that provide alternatives to violence during the summer months when victimizations typically are at their highest level. The focus of this CSA grant supports the expansion of the investments as they increase funding to organizations to serve year-round and not limit to the summer.
3. Chapin Hall Center for Children: Chapin Hall is an independent nonprofit providing research and policy expertise to work alongside communities to build more effective services and systems; accelerate the use of evidence in policy and practice; and better serve children, youth, and families impacted by child protection services, juvenile justice and those living in under-resourced communities. Chapin Hall works directly with juvenile justice systems to prioritize the healing and mentorship of youth to disrupt the pipeline of youth into detention and other secure institutions; strengthen linkages with community agencies and programs whose mission is to rehabilitate youth; and incorporate concepts of trauma-informed care, restorative justice, positive youth development, and youth competency into juvenile justice efforts.
4. Chicago Peace League at Breakthrough Ministries: Piloted in 2022 with more than 100 young men and welcoming more than 100 spectators, the Chicago Peace League runs an evening basketball league in the Garfield Park neighborhood. The program is deeply community-embedded and helps to instill peace through the game of basketball. 

5. Laureus Sport for Good: Laureus Sport for Good Chicago is a collective that provides a platform for collaboration and advocates for sport as a vehicle for social change in our community. Since their launch in 2018, they have provided more than 60 grants impacting the lives of over 50,000 young people, trained more than 250+ local coaches in sports-based youth development and positive youth development best practices and built partnerships with local and state officials to secure $10.5M in government appropriations funding through ICJIA, providing grants to organizations working in R3 Zones, which have the highest concentration of reported violence and child poverty throughout the state.

6. Metropolitan Peace Initiatives: Metropolitan Peace Initiatives (MPI), a division of Metropolitan Family Services (MFS), convenes community-based and citywide organizations to help heal Chicago’s communities experiencing the highest levels of gun violence. MPI coordinates, supports and sustains a cross-agency infrastructure comprised of local community-based and citywide hyperlocal organizations, which delivers a comprehensive set of services to heal communities at the highest risk of violence. MPI’s core focus areas include: Behavioral Health Services, Workforce Development, the Metropolitan Peace Academy (MPA), and Justice Corps: Legal Aid. 
Since its inception and including this year, the CSA has invested $7 million in evidence-based programs. The McCormick Foundation has contributed an additional $3 million in matching grants since 2019 – for a total of $10 million in funding.

 “By building awareness of effective solutions to gun violence in Chicago and promoting community-based organizations, the Chicago Sports Alliance hopes to increase local engagement and support of these six organizations,” said Sonia Mathew, Director of Partnerships at the McCormick Foundation. “We’re honored to support new organizations in this year’s grant cycle, Laureus Sports for Good and Metropolitan Peace Initiatives.”

The teams will continue to evaluate the CSA’s impact on an annual basis. Decisions regarding programs that will receive future funding will be made as the effort progresses.