This year the Anniversary Gala is co-presented by Family Focus and Chicago Child Care Society celebrating our shared mission and the children and families we serve in under-resourced communities. As leaders in delivering early childhood development and family support services we will raise awareness and critical funds for program delivery throughout Chicagoland – meeting families where they are and helping them reach their dreams
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Family Focus and the Chicago Child Care Society decided to cancel the 2020 event. We hope we will see you at our 2021 gala on Thursday, May 20, 2021!
The Gala is the primary annual fundraising event for both Family Focus and Chicago Child Care Society. By cancelling the event, Family Focus and Chicago Child Care Society will incur a combined net revenue loss of more than $300,000 in the 2020 fiscal year. We are working diligently to address the impact that the loss of revenue will have on our services to the disadvantaged community members that we serve.
In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic puts additional pressure on our clients, insofar as schools have closed and unemployment has skyrocketed. Many are scrambling to meet their basic needs and have reached out to us for help. As such, there has never been a greater need for the services provided by Family Focus and Chicago Child Care Society.
Founded in 1976, and guided by the Principles of Family Support, Family Focus promotes the well-being of children from birth by strengthening families in and with their communities. We help parents and families develop parental resilience, build social connections, increase knowledge of child development, secure basic needs, and develop their children’s social and emotional competence.
Family Focus centers are located in the Chicago neighborhoods of Englewood, Hermosa, and North Lawndale, and in the suburbs of Aurora, Cicero, DuPage/Elgin, Evanston, and Highland Park/Highwood, providing resources and building a community of support to help parents become their child’s first teacher, and give their children their best possible start in life.
Family Focus programs include early childhood development, Family Advocacy Centers (in partnership with the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services), fatherhood, home visiting, health and nutrition, immigration and citizenship support, school and center-based youth programs, and trauma support for young children and families.
The longest-operating social service agency in Illinois, Chicago Child Care Society was founded in 1849 as an orphanage to help children in crisis who lost their parents to a cholera epidemic. Throughout CCCS’s history, other events separated children from their parents – the Civil War, Chicago Fire, two World Wars, and the Great Depression – and CCCS maintained its mission finding children new homes and caring families through adoption or foster care.
In 1960, CCCS turned to child development services, opening an early childhood center and serving young mothers. Today, CCCS has expanded services to 2,000 children, youth and parents annually with preschools, home visiting programs, teen and young adult mentoring, and family support of kinship care givers and housing advocacy. CCCS believes in serving the whole family so that children and parents striveand thrive together.
CCCS serves across Chicago’s south side and south suburban neighborhoods with early childhood education and development centers in Hyde Park and South Shore, headquarters in Hyde Park and a satellite office in South Holland.
Sharad Kapur will recieve the Bernice Weissbourd Award for Family Support, presented by Family Focus.
Inspired by the impact that programming had on families in Chicago, Sharad joined the Family Focus Board of Directors in 1989. Shortly thereafter, he became a member of the Board Finance Committee and was elected the Family Focus Treasurer six years ago. He has also led the strategic planning of Family Focus’ financial future ever since joining the Board. Professionally, Sharad spent his entire career at Accenture, including 16 years as a Partner. Since retiring in 2006, Sharad has been studying holistic medicine and Spanish and pursuing his passion for golf and fishing. Sharad has been personally involved with families at the Family Focus Nuestra Familia’s Cicero center and has made a legacy donation for which Family Focus renamed the Aurora center the Kapur Family Center.
John G. Levi will recieve the Dream Builder Award, presented by Chicago Child Care Society.
A Partner at Sidley, John is past President and a Life Member of CCCS and has served on the board since 1974. He has been a dedicated leader and trusted advisor to every Executive Director and CEO in all critical decisions. John is a true champion for children and education, also serving on the board of High Jump in Chicago for youth with academic ambition to attend outstanding high schools and college, and secretary of the board of Cook County Justice for Children to advocate for fair and effective administration of the Cook County Juvenile Justice system. John serves on many other boards and associations, not the least of which is his nomination by President Obama in 2009 to the Legal Services Corporation board where he his is now Chairman. John exemplifies a humble servant leader.