Chicago Beyond’s Relief Response


 Chicago Beyond Launches Hyperlocal Response Effort to Reach Thousands of Chicagoans During COVID-19 Pandemic 

Solidarity in a Time of Uncertainty

The COVID-19 pandemic is challenging Chicagoans and individuals across the world in ways we have never imagined.  As we have seen during previous crises, it will also have a disproportionate impact on those already living in the margins now and after.

In response to the evolving situation, and with the support of our investors, philanthropists Kimbra and Mark Walter, Chicago Beyond is launching Going Beyond, a hyperlocal initiative to reach tens of thousands of youth and families with less access to self-care items and healthy food. During this uncertain time, we will deploy $250,000 worth of basic necessities to an estimated 5,000 families a week.

Building on efforts underway across the city and state, the new initiative is designed to be flexible and distribution will evolve as the situation evolves. Please click here for our full press release. 

As our Founder and CEO, Liz Dozier said, “We must respond to this moment rapidly, with flexibility and integrity while planning for a more just and equitable world post-COVID-19.” Please click here to read the full letter by Liz Dozier

Our team has delivered a number of items to direct service organizations that have relationships with Chicagoans who are often left behind. 


Pounds of non-perishable food items for bags of groceries for 15,000 families


Bags of basic hygiene kits 


Gallons of hand sanitizer produced by local distillery, Koval, has been distributed to families and nonprofit organizations who continue to work with young people during this time


Information cards in English and Spanish with accurate facts
about the virus and how to stop the spread 

Learning From the Past

Learning from past crises that disproportionately impacted communities of color, such as the Chicago heat wave of 1995, these resources will specifically meet the basic needs of youth and their families who reside in Chicago’s neighborhoods that have already experienced high levels of poverty and trauma.
To learn more about the inequitable impact of the 1995 Chicago heat wave, we recommend watching the documentary COOKED: Survival By Zip Code, now streaming on Amazon Prime (free with an Amazon Prime account). Click here to watch. Or read Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago by Eric Klinenberg.

More From Chicago Beyond's Response

We have gathered useful links that include information from educational resources to emergency assistance through the City of Chicago. Links in red are the newest additions. Please click here for details and check back often for updates. 

Read our Leader in Residence Dr. Nneka Jones Tapia’s published op-ed in the Chicago Tribune calling on leaders to show more consideration to those inside jails and prisons during this unprecedented time. Click here to read the full op-ed.

Read about the six core equity principles driving our response in responding to Covid-19.