Shop and Give Back on Amazon Smile

One Hope United is excited to be a part of AmazonSmile, a simple and automatic way for you to support One Hope United every time you shop—at no cost to you! The products and services on Amazon remain the same—the only difference is accessing Amazon through One Hope United’s dedicated link. Now you can continue to make a difference in the lives of children and families at One Hope United just by shopping online!

You Shop. Amazon Gives.

Anyone with an Amazon account can shop through smile.amazon.com and donate 0.5 percent of your Amazon purchases to One Hope United. You’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to One Hope United.

Easy as 1-2-3!

Getting started on AmazonSmile is easy! Get set up today to start supporting One Hope United through your Amazon purchases.

  1. Go to One Hope United’s AmazonSmile landing page.
  2. Make sure One Hope United is selected on the right side of the landing page. It should read “Your shopping will support One Hope United.”
  3. Click “Start Shopping” and you’re off!

Having trouble finding One Hope United from the Amazon Smile page? To change your charitable organization:

  1. Sign in to smile.amazon.com on your desktop or mobile phone browser.
  2. From your desktop, go to Your Account from the navigation at the top of any page, and on under Select a Charity, you can search for “One Hope United” by typing in the Pick your own charitable organization field. 
  3. Select “One Hope United.”

For more information about the AmazonSmile program, go to http://smile.amazon.com/about.

We thank you for your support!

 

Support One Hope United on Amazon

5 Things to Know about Head Start

All parents want to provide the best opportunities for their children to learn, grow and thrive. This is especially true when it comes to education. No child should miss out on a quality education because of their family’s ability to pay.

That’s why One Hope United is pleased to offer Head Start or Early Head Start programing at four of our child care and early education centers. These programs combine quality child care and education with other programing and resources to help set every child up for success:

Not sure if your family is eligible? It’s easy to find out and One Hope United is here for you every step of the way.

Here are five things you should know about the Head Start Program at One Hope United:

1. Head Start Seeks to Give Every Child an Equal Chance

Head Start, a federally funded program, is designed to give every child equal access to the resources and support they need. Established in 1965 for low-income families, Head Start promotes school readiness for children ages birth to five. These programs enhance children’s social and cognitive development by offering children and their families educational, nutritional, health, social and other services.

The services Head Start provides are designed to set up children for success by the time they are ready to start kindergarten. One Hope United combines Head Start with child care assistance to provide a full day of early childhood care and education for families who are working or in school at a significantly reduced cost.

2. It’s Easy to Find Out if You Qualify for Head Start

There are four ways you and your child can qualify for Head Start:

  1. You meet the income qualifications, OR
  2. You receive public assistance, OR
  3. Your child is in foster care, OR
  4. You or your child lack permanent housing.

Families with children from birth to age five who meet specific criteria in any one of these four categories can receive Head Start or Early Head Start programming. Families receiving public assistance (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families or Supplemental Security Income), or families with low incomes, according to the Poverty Guidelines published by the Federal government, are eligible.

One Hope United has family support specialists to assist families with the eligibility process. Families can either call or walk-in to one of the Bridgeport, Edgewater or Waukegan centers with proof of income and the child’s birth certificate. They will then fill out an application (One Hope United can provide assistance) and complete an interview. The family will soon receive a notice about their child’s/children’s eligibility. The eligibility/enrollment process can be started at anytime during the year.

3. Parents Receive Support, Too!

All Head Start families have a family support specialist that they work with for as long as they participate in the program. Assistance in finding medical providers, mental health professionals, and nutrition counseling are just some of the services that are provided. Plus, families receive two home visits that serve as building blocks to establishing a positive relationship.

Many of One Hope United’s staff are bilingual. If there is a language barrier, One Hope United will provide translation support services. We want to clearly communicate with families so they understand the services they’re eligible for and feel comfortable with all we can provide.

4. Parents Are Part of Their Child’s Education

One Hope United families who are part of the Head Start program are actively involved with their child’s education by helping to set goals and determining how best to support their child.

Parents and One Hope United teachers and staff have at least two parent conferences a year where assessments are reviewed, strengths are determined and priorities are set for continued development.

5. We Offer Quality Education For All

One Hope United’s Head Start locations in Bridgeport and Edgewater are accredited by NAEYC (The National Association of Education of Young Children), a distinction held by only 6% of centers in the country. A NAEYC accredited center is one that is recognized as providing exceptional care and a variety of educational, developmental, and personal services. All preschool classrooms are led by a licensed teacher who is certified to teach up to the third grade.

The suburban Waukegan location is currently undergoing accreditation by NAEYC. This location offers Early Head Start services to low-income infants, toddlers and their families.

At One Hope United it is our vision to help every child, every family live a life without limits. If you feel limited by the specific circumstances that makes your family eligible for Head Start, please contact one of our centers today or use the form below.

Contact Us

One Hope United to Name Edgewater Early Learning Space for Toni Sandor Smith

Edgewater and Andersonville families and community members are invited to a dedication event and open house at One Hope United Edgewater Early Learning Center Friday, August 17, starting at 12:30 PM. Parents, children, community leaders, and neighbors are invited to tour the center, located at 5244 N. Lakewood Ave. (enter on W. Berwyn Ave. just west of Lakewood), and enjoy refreshments and a musical performance by award-winning saxophonist Michael Salter following a dedication ceremony.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony will name a learning space for Toni Sandor Smith, a member of One Hope United’s board of directors for nearly 20 years. Smith, a retired partner of the executive recruiting firm Spencer Stuart, lives in Edgewater and is a frequent visitor to the center and a favorite storybook reader of its students.

Smith, a New York City native, moved to Chicago in 1963 and joined Spencer Stuart in 1970 as a receptionist. Four years later she became the firm’s first female consultant and eventually its first female partner. She founded and led the firm’s nonprofit practice and helped place executives in many of Chicago’s and the country’s leading nonprofits.

Smith has been equally ambitious at One Hope United. She cofounded the organization’s first annual gala, which has grown into Hope In Action, an annual event that attracts more than 300 guests and raises hundreds of thousands of dollars to support work for children and families in Chicago and beyond.

As a member of the board’s governance committee – and serving several terms as chair – Smith has helped evolve the board from a group of mission-dedicated volunteers to a team of accomplished executives who, in addition to a passion for the mission, bring fundraising capacity and professional expertise that allow them to be more strategic and proactive in steering the 120-year-old, $50 million organization.

“As a member of our board of directors for nearly 20 years, Toni Sandor Smith has been an outstanding servant of One Hope United, seeing the organization through immense change and growth. I speak for the entire board when I say we are thrilled to recognize her service by naming a space for her in her own community, at the Edgewater Early Learning Center,” said board chair Theresa A. Dear.

In addition to serving on One Hope United’s board, a role she will step down from next year, Smith has volunteered with the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Chicago Network, the Executive Service Corps of Chicago, Lakeview Pantry, the Oriental Institute, and Steppenwolf Theatre.

Chicago native Michael Salter is an award-winning saxophonist, composer, and bandleader. Salter was nominated for a Grammy award for a salsa big band recording with Angel Melendez and the 911 Mambo Orchestra. Since July 2008, Salter has been a member of Orbert Davis’s Chicago Jazz Philharmonic. The group’s latest CD, Havana Blue, was listed as one of the best CDs of 2016 by Downbeat Magazine. A passionate and dedicated educator, Salter is also a Chicago Jazz Philharmonic Teaching Artist, which allows musicians from the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic to work directly with youth from Chicago Public Schools.

Music by Michael Salter

The Edgewater Early Learning Center, located in the North Shore Baptist Church, has been serving families in Chicago’s Edgewater and Andersonville neighborhoods with the highest quality early education and care for more than 30 years. Accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the center provides individualized care for children, including children with special needs, in an environment designed to foster growth and development, and includes Head Start classrooms, which provide services and preschool to families living at or below the federal poverty level.

Free and Open to the Public

RSVP Requested at onehopeunited.org/tonismith

Questions? Call us at 773-907-0278

Serving and Supporting Transgender Youth at One Hope United

When the opportunity to serve transgender youth through One Hope United’s Centralia residential programs arose, director Melissa Webster thought to herself, “We can do that!”

According to the National Center for Child Welfare Excellence, 57 percent of trans youth report experiencing family rejection, and trans youth are disproportionately represented in child welfare settings. If they feel unsafe in their placement, they may choose instead to live on the streets—20 percent of homeless youth identify as trans.

Melissa knew that her facilities, which include private rooms and locking doors, as well as her team’s approach of doing what’s best for the youth in their care, would make One Hope United a good fit for trans youth. “There’s no judgment here,” she said. “Wherever you are today, we’re going to meet you there.”

That’s what the team tried to convey to Taylor*, 15, when he visited the campus to consider living there (he was assigned a female sex at birth and now identifies as male). Home supervisor Greg Phoenix began by asking Taylor what he needed from the program. “He really just wanted our support and to be accepted for who he was, and our willingness to do that was probably the largest deciding factor for him choosing us,” Greg said.

Taylor’s arrival on campus took some adjustment for some of the other boys, but Greg says that period was short and that Taylor now gets along with all the boys in the home. “They see him as one of their own. They watch TV together, play games together—he’s fully accepted.”

The staff at One Hope United have supported Taylor by helping him when he wanted to travel to the pride parade in Springfield, Illinois, and to an LGBTQ support group in St. Louis, Missouri. Taylor also holds a leadership role on DCFS’s youth advisory board and is working with two other LGBTQ youth on campus to start a support group at One Hope United. Now, Taylor is poised to transition to foster care.

Working with Taylor, one of the first openly trans youth at One Hope United, has been “enriching,” says therapist Howard Coon.

“He knew from a very young age that he wasn’t born in the right body. He can say, ‘I know this is who I want to be,’ and it’s nice to see youth who can put that kind of passion into their treatment, their personal lives, and their goals,” Howard said. “We hope to help Taylor achieve some of those things before he moves on to his next placement.”

This story is from our 2017 Annual Report.

*Name has been changed.

OHU Leader Joins Bowman Leadership Fellows Program

We are excited to announce that Carisa Hurley, an Early Learning Director of Programs here at One Hope United, has been accepted into the Erikson Institute’s Barbara Bowman Leadership Fellows Program!

The Barbara Bowman Leadership Fellows Program chooses fifteen professionals who provide direct service, advocacy, and funding support while working in the early childhood sector. The fellowship is incorporated into a 10-month leadership program designed to enhance each participant’s knowledge-base, provide skill application, and connect them to a larger network for influencing early childhood policy and system changes.

The intentions of this fellowship are to “…provide professionals in the field with the knowledge and tools to extend the impact of their work by influencing policy change that can transform early childhood on a larger scale.” says Geoffrey A. Nagle, President and Chief Executive Officer of Erikson Institute.

The fellowship program provides evidence-based information and the analytical framework to apply a racial equity lens to early childhood policy. Monthly seminars covering subjects such as the public policy life cycle, federal and state policy, and other related topics provide fellows with a solid foundation to distinguish important early childhood issues and be given the opportunity to translate learning into action.

All of the fellows chosen are child advocates working within various organizations, therefore the overarching goal is to enhance their role and expand their influence to frame policy issues and recommendations guided by their organization’s mission and the diversity of the population they serve.

We wish Carisa all the best as she begins her fellowship on June 16th!

Click here to learn more about our Child Care and Early Learning programs.

See our new Child Development video!

OHU’s Child Development Centers are dedicated to educating, nourishing, and empowering young children and families. Our 12 Centers throughout Chicagoland serve more than 2,100 children and meet all goals for social, emotional, cognitive, language and physical development. All of our eligible centers are accredited or undergoing accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)—a distinction held by only 6% of centers in the country. A version of this spot aired on Chicago’s PBS Kids station.

Learn more about our Centers here!

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month!

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month!

To help spread awareness, One Hope United’s director of programs – home visiting, Adrienne Patterson-Green, spoke with Susan Wiencek, the host of podcast Mix Matters with WTMX 101.9 The Mix, to discuss the signs of child abuse and how to report these abuses.

Take a listen to learn about different signs of abuse for different age groups, hotlines to call, and the Go Blue campaign OHU has organized for the whole month of April.

Link: Child Abuse Prevention on WTMX

#GoBlue4OHU | National Child Abuse Prevention Month

Doing Good that Tastes Good.
Dine out at Chicago restaurants in April to support One Hope United’s programs to prevent child abuse.

Throughout April, local Chicago restaurants are offering specialty menu items for diners to sip, feast on, or imbibe. Go Blue restaurants will donate a portion of the proceeds from select menu items to benefit One Hope United’s programs to prevent child abuse. One Hope United is one of Chicago’s oldest private human service organizations, working to ensure every child can look forward to a Life Without Limits.

Visit GoBlule4OHU.org to learn how to get involved!