What We Do: Investment
We believe community organizations and grassroots leaders are among our city’s greatest assets, but that investment gaps exist, missing opportunities for impact, equity and change.
We address these gaps by providing community-driven funding, opportunities to raise unrestricted funds, in-kind resources and administrative support. All of our investments, whether financial or in-kind, are led by what our community partners say they need to be more effective. By addressing investment gaps in the current nonprofit ecosystem, we help to better leverage existing resources.
What we invest in
We provide small “grants” ranging from $500-30,000 to community partners to support pilot programs, program enhancements, community and social cohesion, resilience and collaboration. In addition to financial resources, we provide a range of in-kind support in response to community need, ranging from PPE and food to pro bono legal assistance to access to fundraising opportunities.
How we invest
Our investments are based on trusted relationships and are responsive to what our community partners say they need, all of whom serve neighborhoods contending with the highest levels of socioeconomic disparities and gun violence. We believe those closest to our greatest challenges have the insights, ingenuity and trust to identify how best to leverage community assets and mitigate unintended consequences of policy and philanthropy.
What We Do: Field and Capacity Building
We believe that to change the world we must invest in collaboration, lead with what we share in common and learn from each other. To that end, we strive to increase impact by seeding an ecosystem for convening, collaborating, networking and learning for those working to address community gun violence.
We bring organizations and individuals from across Chicago to share knowledge and resources about a number of strategic, program and administrative issues.
Collaboration takes an investment in time and skill and faces many barriers. We do the muscle work on key projects to facilitate collaboration and ensure insights can turn into action. In addition, we foster collaboration across a number of our key activities such as the Race Against Gun Violence and targeted introductions to organizations and individuals with aligned missions.
Insight and innovation often emerge organically, resulting from informal conversations and relationships. We facilitate events to expand relationships and influence across the nonprofit ecosystem which includes community organizations, civic institutions and donors.
We host workshops designed to address knowledge gaps identified by our community partners across a range of topics from marketing and risk assessment to wellness. In addition, we curate information about resource and event opportunities that would specifically benefit our community partners.
We work closely with a number grassroots leaders to increase personal and professional capacity and strengthen access to existing resources and opportunities.
Field and capacity building requires a boots on the ground understanding of opportunities and challenges. We regularly visit and provide onsite support to our community partners as volunteers to learn about their work, develop relationships and simply help out!
Based on feedback from the field and the priorities of our Strategic Leadership Council, we pilot programs to address investment gaps and improve individual and system efficacy. Our Partners in Resilience program was developed as a response to the chronic trauma experienced by frontline staff and grassroots leaders working, and often living, in communities experiencing the highest prevalence of gun violence. Partners in Resiliency offers an innovative, multidisciplinary, community-informed approach to addressing primary and secondary trauma, foster collaboration and create an ecosystem for personal and professional growth for those exposed to the impact of gun violence.
What We Do: Storytelling
Our story is not just about Strides for Peace, but the collective efforts of our all partners and friends. We believe many of these stories get lost in the news and academic research and thus the general public, so we produce media assets and events to provide new and different paths to understanding.
Our films provide an opportunity for the general public to meet the people and visit the organizations who work on the frontlines of gun violence and to deepen their understanding of our greatest challenges and the community leaders who fight for change
Community organizations are among Chicago's greatest assets. Meet the people who choose hope, no matter the odds.
Everyone has a stake in ending gun violence. Hear the stories of people working for a peaceful Chicago.
Greg Zanis Tribute Project
A collection of videos we shared with Greg and his family, showing how much his work mattered to the gun violence survivor community.
Music and Art
Sometimes words can only tell part of the story, so we collaborate with others to feature artistic expressions of the impact of gun violence to deepen understanding.
What We Do: Advocacy
We believe an understanding of our problems and their attending solutions must include the strategic insights gained from people most impacted and those with boots on the ground, responsible for street level implementation.
360° Funding Project
Community organizations are typically not in the room when decisions are made about policy and funding. We believe this creates a series of unintended consequences around implementation, impact and equity.
Our project seeks to explore and change the narrative about the drivers of nonprofit impact, amplify the perspectives of community organizations and grassroots leaders, and identify new approaches that promote efficacy and equity.
We organize municipal and state “lobby days” to promote the strategic value of community organizations working to end gun violence, bring people together with different lived experience together, and create new ways to collaborate and increase collective impact.
We convene panel and other kinds of group discussions, often alongside our film content, to explore issues of community gun violence from the lens of survivors and community and grassroots leaders.
What We Do: Bridge Building
We believe that to end gun violence we must invest in collaboration, lead with what we share in common and learn from each other.
Across neighborhoods, organizations, people and sectors we know we are better together. Whether through our Race Against Gun Violence, Corporate Social Responsibility programming, special events or individual introductions, we are dedicated to being the connectors that lead to increased understanding and engagement.
COMING SOON. We are excited to soon be offering Strides for Peace memberships to offer new ways to connect, commit, contribute and change. Please contact [email protected] if you would like to learn more.
Corporate Social Responsibility
The Race Against Gun Violence (RAGV) raises awareness and funds for more than 50 community organizations working for a more peaceful Chicago where all can thrive. RAGV offers a turnkey opportunity to engage employees in health and wellness activities, community service and charitable giving. Learn more.