Innovate or Perish
I hope this year has gotten off to a great start for you. This year has been pretty busy for us, as it is our goal to exceed the success we experienced last year. It’s been a while since I wrote, and I have lots of exciting news to share with you!
2012 was an incredible year for us. We experienced impressive growth and increased support, while also participating in many learning opportunities. Here are some of our accomplishments from last year:
Top Rated Nonprofit, 2 consecutive
Hosted our first group of interns
Hosted 6 engaging & successful events
Chicago Ideas Week Community Partner
Founder became a global StartingBloc
fellow & Ideas Marketplace winner
Nominated for Classy Awards
First formal luncheon SOLD OUT
Became a GoodCity Program
Nearly 1000 twitter followers
Founder recognized as
Although Advocates for Adolescent Mothers continues to experience gradual growth, I don’t think there has ever been a more challenging and volatile time to establish a nonprofit. There were 40,000 new nonprofits incorporated in 2011, yet 20,000 nonprofits dissolved that same year. With the circumstances that led to the Fiscal Cliff, I foresee the continued loss of numerous nonprofits despite individuals’ increasing need for human services in various areas.
Last year I was very disheartened by the dissolution of Hull House, which I expressed in an earlier edition of AFAM’s “The Archive”. In December 2012, Chicago lost another important nonprofit, the Bottomless Closet, which provided career wear and other services to disadvantaged women. Ironically, approximately 6 months before releasing the news that they would be closing their doors, the Bottomless Closet publicly announced an expansion.
Of all the epiphanies that I have reached over the past year as I have immersed myself in AFAM’s work, one of the most important is the resolution not to allow Advocates for Adolescent Mothers to grow larger than we have the capacity to handle. That’s quite a challenge for me on multiple levels. On one hand, it is important for me to accomplish many tasks at a rapid pace–I am compelled by a sense of urgency to address poverty and its symptoms as manifested in families headed by young parents. Yet the reality of the current economic climate that is resulting in hundreds of nonprofits competing for the same diminishing resources imposes serious limitations on those accomplishments. What’s more, grant making has become increasingly focused on scale and impact, which is difficult to accomplish with limited resources.
Despite my personal reservations against minimizing Advocates for Adolescent Mothers offerings at this time, it is in the organization’s best interest to scale back on particular services/programs. It takes time to build something significant, and because I believe that Advocates for Adolescent Mothers mission is part of my life’s purpose, I am committed to investing the amount of time needed to successfully establish the organization. Of course we will continue to keep you abreast of our progress and any changes with our organization. Please read on to learn a little more about what we have planned for this year.
Lillian S. Harris
Founder and President
Advocates for Adolescent Mothers
A YEAR IN PHOTOS: AFAM SCRAPBOOK 2012
Our Holiday Drive, Mission150, was a highlight of the holidays for us: We provided nearly 275 toys and 75 coats to homeless and underprivileged young moms and children at 5 Chicago area nonprofits.
Special thanks to our Holiday Drive program partners & supporters: TCF Bank, Be Healthy Photography, the Chicago Police Department, The National Association of Black Journalists Chicago Chapter, Intoxicating Bartending Services, DJ MH2da, Caston Sound Experience, the UPS Store, FedEx Office, Classic Party Rentals, Heartfelt Catering, Turkey Time, and CityPoint Loft.
Check out the photos from our Holiday Social and Holiday Party, as well as photos from all of our events last year.
Our Holiday Drive program starts with the collection of toys and outerwear, culminates with our Holiday Social, and ends with the Holiday Party, where we deliver the gifts to the young moms and their children.
See more photos of the Social here. Additional photos of the Party coming soon.
BOWLING AGAINST POVERTY & CHARITY BASEBALL GAME
We hosted 2 installments of our Bowling Against Poverty event in March and September. Everyone had a great time knocking ’em down for prosperity. Also in September, we participated in the Chicago Police VS. Chicago Fire Department charity baseball game at U.S. Cellular Field. See additional bowling photos here and here.
SUMMER SKYLIGHT LUNCHEON
We hosted our first formal fundraiser atop the world renown Hancock Building at The Signature Room. Guests of the luncheon learned more about the story behind Advocates for Adolescent Mothers, the significance of our work with young parents and their children, our current activities, and our plan for the future. The ladies and gentlemen who shared their Saturday with us enjoyed a gourmet buffet, met Educational Empowerment Grant Initiative winners and their parents, won fabulous door prizes and auction items, and with the gorgeous views from the Signature Room, came to embrace the shared theme of our event and edifice, “The Sky is the Limit”. See more event photos here.
AFAM COMPETING FOR A MATCHING GRANT FROM MICROSOFT!!!
Advocates for Adolescent Mothers Educational Empowerment Grant Initiative submission was selected for the Microsoft Give for Youth Challenge. Through this competition, we have the opportunity to win up to $100,000 in match funding. To be eligible for the match funding, we must advance to the next phase of the competition. We need your help to do that. Please take 5 minutes to vote for us TODAY and share with your networks so that they can vote for us too. Click here to vote. We will find out on March 7th if we have advanced to the next phase of the competition.
We are literally counting on your vote. Thanks for your support!
CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR FOUNDER FOR WINNING THE ZETA ZEAL AWARD FROM ZETA PHI BETA’s XI MU ZETA CHICAGO CHAPTER!
Our founder and president, Lillian Harris, will receive Xi Mu Zeta’s Zeal Award at the Essence of Zeta Awards Ceremony. The event is scheduled for Saturday March 16th from
1 p.m. – 4 p.m. at the Crystal Light Banquet Hall, located at 8200 S. Cicero in Burbank, IL.
Interested in attending the ceremony or placing an ad?
Tickets are $55.
Place an ad in the program for as low as $60 or One line plain text from $5.
The deadline to place an ad is Saturday March 2nd and should be emailed in jpeg format to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
If purchasing tickets, please indicate that you are a guest of Lillian Harris.
For additional information about the Essence of Zeta Awards, please contact:
Ms. Adrianne Miller, (773) 550-0346, firstname.lastname@example.org, or email@example.com.
We are taking our events “portfolio” to a new level this year, while improving our health and discipline, with our involvement in the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle and the MB Financial Bank Bike the Drive.
The Shamrock Shuffle will take place on Sunday April 7th, and we are competing as team Running for Prosperity. We are excited about beginning our training and can’t wait for race day. We invite you to follow our progress on our Crowdrise page.
Bike the Drive is scheduled for Sunday May 26th. We are really looking forward to this event as it provides bikers the opportunity pedal along 30 scenic miles of Lakeshore Drive, car free. This is a family friendly event and we invite you and your family to join team Bike the Drive Break the Cycle. We are also recruiting volunteers for this event.
Please email us if you are interested in joining either of our teams, volunteering, or need to request any additional information.
AFAM 2012 DONOR HONOR ROLL
Advocates for Adolescent Mothers wishes to acknowledge our 2012 donors and sponsors, and extend a heartfelt thank you. Your support helped make 2012 an incredible year for us.
Deborah J. Kapp
Stephen & Ntshiuwa Bess
Cecelia Hamilton, Heartfelt Catering
L’Oreal Johnson, Intoxicating Bartending Services
Mike Bader, Calumet Oaks
Be Healthy Photography
Michael House, DJ MH2da
Guy Bibbs, Turkey Time
Reverend Dr. Barbara Wilson
Christine Potthoff, Travel beCause
Marianna Kerppola on behalf of Google Ann Arbor, MI
Blake P. Sercye
Jennifer Burrell, Frock Shop
Bruce Caston, Caston Sound Experience
Lorne Golman, Perfect Cut Producations
Mr. and Mrs. Taurus Fields, Taurus Protection Agency
*Denotes Educational Empowerment Grant Initiative sponsor.
BE HEALTHY PHOTOGRAPHY’s XTREME GLAMOUR SPECIAL
This extraordinary deal includes:
Makeup by Rayn
Basic Hair Services by Queen
Photography by Ronald MasterPhotographer Ewell
This package includes a 30 minute photo shoot with unlimited poses and one 4X6 print.
Additional images may be purchased online–prices will vary.
Additional services in all categories available by appointment.
Promotional offer for a limited time only so schedule your Xtreme Glamour Special today!
For more information, contact Ronald Masterphotographer Ewell at (708) 717-2088
Thank you so much for taking the time to read the February 2013 edition of The Archive! We appreciate your support!