Mayor Lightfoot, CPS Launch Groundbreaking Summer Program

By: Ashmar Mandou

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local NewsA new groundbreaking summer program called Summer for Change (S4C) designed to reach Chicago’s vulnerable youth launched Wednesday with the help of Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and Chicago Public School (CPS). S4C is a six-week program that will provide youth with access to individualized mentoring, group-based therapy, educational opportunities, enrichment activities and more. “After the final school bell rings and the school year ends, our commitment to the growth, enrichment and safety of Chicago’s children continues,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “Summer for Change will offer high school students meaningful activities and programs to participate in, providing the sense of safety, service and opportunity over summer break.”

Jointly delivered by Youth Advocate Programs and Children’s Home and Aid, the CPS-led program will include individualized mentoring for four hours per day, group-based trauma-informed therapy multiple times a week, enrichment activities such as field trips, community service projects and a variety of recreational activities. Each participant will also receive stipend of up to $200 per week and a free lunch every day. Summer for Change programming and activities will incur no cost to participants or their families. In addition to Summer for Change, Mayor Lightfoot joined city departments and community leaders to expand on Chicago’s citywide plan for keeping youth engaged in safe, fun and productive activities as CPS kicks off its summer break starting Thursday, June 21st. A new comprehensive resource guide, called “YOUR CHI” provides students and their families with a strong menu of information on positive programming and events, youth health services, learning opportunities, and free summer meals being hosted throughout the city for children of all ages this summer season.

“Summer is here and what better place to spend it than our parks,” said Chicago Park District Superintendent Michael Kelly. “In addition to welcoming more than 40,000 campers, we are excited to offer a vast menu of sports, cultural and recreation opportunities for our children, teens and families.” In “YOUR CHI,” families can find information on a wide range of programs and events provided by the city’s departments and agencies available in parks, schools, and community centers near their home. Each summer in Chicago, youths in grades K-12 can enroll in a wide range of athletic and cultural opportunities, including thousands of sports leagues and clubs provided by the Chicago Park District, to the more than 1,200 parks citywide that are hosting entertainment and movies series in the parks. Youth and their parents or guardians can explore the YOUR CHI guide online at or by calling 311.

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