C24/7 Reaches, Serves, and Empowers our Shared Community of Rogers Park.

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Our Mission

C24/7 is a non-profit organization dedicated, through the power of Jesus Christ, to improving the lives of children and young adults in the North of Howard neighborhood by providing them with the necessary tools, security and environment for them to thrive economically, socially and spiritually. 

Our Vision

To provide hope and a path to resurrection to the children and other citizens of impoverished communities.

 

C24/7 By The Numbers

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The Neighborhood

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The Rogers Park neighborhood of Chicago is hard to fit neatly into a description. With Lake Michigan running along it’s eastern border and Loyola University along it’s southern, the neighborhood is home to significant amounts of wealth and academic achievement. As the third densest neighborhood in the city, Rogers Park boasts an array of diversity within its population. It’s nearly 55,000 residents come from all around the country and world.

At first glance this vibrant color wheel seems like a shining positive. For many, though, the wheel spins in the wrong direction. Gentrification and segregation have led to vastly different tales of life in the neighborhood, depending on the block one lives in. White households, for example, make nearly $20,000 more per year than black households. Few blocks are truly, or even moderately, integrated, and a good portion of the poverty and crime has been sequestered to the northern tip of the neighborhood.

This northern tip contains the North of Howard neighborhood, which is the distinct community our organization calls home. Representing only 9% of the population of Rogers Park, and only 8% of it’s land mass, “The Jungle”, as our residents call it, sees 23% of all the crime in the neighborhood, and an even higher percentage of the violent crime (https://www.trulia.com/real_estate/Rogers_Park-Chicago/2948/crime/). 21% of our neighbors are on food stamps, as the median household income is 34% lower than the city as a whole. This number would be even lower, were it not for the well-to-do lakefront residents who drive the statistics up significantly. Most of the neighborhood is much worse off than the numbers show.

Most people C24/7 serves are African American, and for them the system is simply not set up for success. The North of Howard neighborhood is severely segregated, leaving many families to deal with a lack of living-wage jobs, not-so-hidden employment discrimination, and sky-high costs of child-care all on their own. Less than half of all black men in our community are employed, and black women are only slightly better off, employed at 51%. This is in stark contrast to employment rates of 81% and 70% for white men and women, respectively, in the very same quarter-mile radius.

Due to the context of oppression and depression which so many in our neighborhood are forced to deal with, spiritual growth rarely has a chance to start. To be sure, not everyone is interested in growing spiritually. For those who are, though, and those who might be, were they not buried under systemic injustice, there should be opportunity to seek deeper meaning, embrace divine love, and build relationships with others on similar journeys. It is here that we start our partnership, and from this point walk in solidarity with our neighbors, seeking academic, economic, social, and spiritual renewal.

Ensuring no child falls through the cracks

 

The C24/7 After-school Program provides opportunities for elementary students who are forgotten or ignored by other local programs to learn, grow, and thrive in and out of the classroom. We build relationships with students and their families, serve their immediate needs in the form of food, childcare, clothes, and supplies, then walk with them on their way to becoming empowered individuals.

Passionate about kids? Learn more and volunteer here.

 
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C24/7 is excited to announce that we will expand our 2017-2018 after school program to four days a week. Each program day (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday) our students will be picked up by James Crockett, Executive Director and walked to the Jonquil Hotel Learning Center. During the 3 hour program (3:15pm-6:30pm) the students have set time for snacks, homework help, playtime, dinner, Bible Study and a time of personal sharing of their days.

Our daily schedule:
3:30-4:00- Snack and Bible Study
4:00-4:30- Play time
4:30-5:15- Homework Time
5:15-6:00- Dinner
6:00-6:30- Clean up

We structure our program on Biblical Principles because we desire our students to grow spiritually.  Our greatest hope is that they leave our program knowing they have a greater purpose and higher calling on their life than what this world offers.

We also desire each of our children to grow educationally through tutoring and homework help. Our volunteers are dedicated to building relationships with our boys in order to know their unique qualities, strengths and weaknesses. We are also working in collaboration with Gale Elementary School (our neighborhood CPS) in order to provide the best holistic approach to meeting our children's educational needs.

Finally, we desire for our boys to have a healthy, well balanced meal each program day. Many of our boys come from low-income housing and may not receive the proper nutrients at home. Meal time is also a very valued time because we use it as a platform for everyone to share how their days went and be heard by everyone else in the program. For some, this is the one time during their day they feel understood and cared for and can openly express their feelings.

Summer program: Thanks to the generosity of families, churches and foundations, C24/7 was able to offer our 1st summer program this year! Every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon we met to play games, eat lunch, discuss our Bible lesson and engage in reading activities.

Ensuring no individual goes without purpose

 

Most of our students have spent time in prison, a gang, or both, and face a severe lack of opportunity. C24/7's Job Development Program, called Dreams, Visions, Work, provides spiritual support and job training in order to connect men and women to work that taps into their unique skills and God-given purpose. We do this through building relationships with local businesses, teaching a proven, faith-based curriculum, and walking each step of the way with our students.

 

 
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We do this through our 2 week training course that studies the "Work Life" curriculum. "Work Life" is made up of 19 units that covers a variety of topics including; God's purposes of work, resume writing, interview training, professional conduct for the work place and the importance of education.

The most vital step in this process is the connections we make with employers. After our participants complete the course, we will connect them with our partnering employers for a full time, living-wage job. We desire for each man and woman who is dedicated to this process to find a job that truly aligns with their unique goals. In this, it is important that the relationship between employer and employee is built on a solid foundation of trust and mutual respect. C24/7 will provide the opportunities and space for those relationships to flourish.

Ensuring the community feels cared for, supported, and empowered

 

Because we live and spend so much time in the community, we are always aware of the needs of our neighbors. Most services and programs in our community don't get to know the individuals they are serving, and fewer put the time in to build those valuable relationships. From strong relationships comes strong change. We provide weekly men's and women's Bible studies, communal open gym time, one-on-one counseling sessions, and street ministry to help our neighbors in the midst of gang activity, violence, drug use, and more. Ultimately we work to make sure each person knows they are loved and embraced by the arms of a loving father.

 

 
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MEN'S AND WOMEN'S BIBLE STUDY

This weekly meeting serves as an entry point for many into the C24/7 community. James and Natalie Crockett lead groups in searching for where God is working in their lives, the neighborhood, and the world.

OPEN GYM

Every Saturday afternoon, our Executive Director and volunteers flock to the Willye B. White Fieldhouse to spend time with guys in the neighborhood, playing basketball. We get some exercise and build stronger relationships.

STREET MINISTRY

Our organization was born out of James Crockett's call to share life with people in the neighborhood who are in a hard spot: people who spend time in and out of gang activity, violence, and drug use. This call continues, as we dedicate a significant amount of time walking with members of our community who can't afford to be forgotten.

SPIRITUAL, MENTAL, AND EMOTIONAL SUPPORT

When you live life in deep community, all sorts of needs arise. On a daily basis we work one-on-one with individuals and families to sort out the spiritual, mental, and emotional needs created by the unjust systems and broken relationships we face.

Get Involved!

How can I help C24/7?

  • Pray
  • Attend Open Gym on Saturday afternoons
  • Financial donations 
  • Connect us with employers that are willing to partner with our job development program 
  • Join us for men's and women's Bible Studies (Sunday and Thursday evenings)
  • In kind donations: snacks, school supplies, juice boxes, cleaning supplies, paper cups/plates, office supplies

Volunteer Opportunities
Volunteers are vital to the work we do in bringing hope to our community. Relationships create a sense of joy, purpose and fulfillment. You are needed here!

After School Program Opportunities:
-Tutor (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 4:30-5:15)
-Cook/bring a meal (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday. Dinner is served at 5:15)
-Email: natalie.a.berg@gmail.com in order to sign up for a time slot

Jr. Board Serving Opportunities:
Our Jr. Board is made up of middle and high school students in surrounding neighborhoods that are seeking to build relationships with the students in C24/7. We meet one time a month and also host food drives, warm clothing drive, organize parties and volunteer at program. This is a great way to get your student involved in expanding their relationships and understanding other cultures and backgrounds. Email matuskaclan@gmail.com for more information.

For more information about C24/7, click here.