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Jobs program creates Chicago jobs

Posted on September 6, 2016

One Summer Chicago youth employment site has helped create thousands of Chicago jobs.

The program employed more than 30,000 youth around the city with job and internship opportunities this summer. Since 2011, Mayor Emanuel has significantly expanded the summer program, more than doubling opportunities while diversifying work opportunities for youths around the city, with nearly 130,000 youth gaining valuable job training and work experience since the program began.

Each year, summer employment opportunities—ranging from infrastructure jobs and camp counselors, urban agriculture and outdoor forestry projects to bike repair and office and clerical work—grow and diversify to meet a strong demand by youth for these opportunities. The ability to continuously grow the program year over year is attributed to the strength of the public-private partnerships each year.

A significant investment by Emerson Collective to expand the 2016 One Summer Chicago program created an additional 4,700 employment and internship opportunities via lead employers After School Matters, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and the Chicago Parks Department. The program further diversified this year with First Lady Amy Rule’s support in securing new employment partners this year, including the Chicago Cubs, Hyatt, Navy Pier, and Walgreens. These newfound investments brought the total private funding supporting the program this year to $17 million.

The Mayor’s Infrastructure Team, a subset of One Summer Chicago supported by City of Chicago departments, employed nearly 2,000 youth this summer. Together, these youth made a collective impact on their communities through the following accomplishments:
• painted 5 murals;
• painted 327 viaducts;
• mulched 3,528 trees;
• collected 9,101 debris filled bags;
• cleaned 786 mains, 793 lots and 6,470 parkways.

“The strength of our One Summer Chicago program is that year over year, our partners citywide come together to do what is best for our youth,” said Department of Family and Support Services Commissioner Lisa Morrison Butler. “Not only have has the program given more than 30,000 youth an opportunity to earn and learn, but we hope that the opportunity to make an impact on their community will leave a lasting impression on our participants.”

To protect opportunities for youth in all communities, Mayor Emanuel restored 65 youth employment opportunities at a small business that had been closed earlier this year due to funding withheld by the state’s ongoing budget impasse. Bikes N’ Roses, which provides after-school and summer jobs for local high school students, reopened its Belmont Cragin location with assistance by the city, allowing the business to employ nearly 40 youth as part of the 2016 One Summer Chicago program. During the summer, youth repaired 195 bikes.