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The Opportunity Fund
The Opportunity Fund is a Board-designated fund that will enable Alternatives to act efficiently and strategically on opportunities to innovate, collaborate, and adapt programming in crucial ways.
This ability to both anticipate and respond to changes in the environment and youth needs and interests is at the heart of Alternatives; since our founding in a Rogers Park storefront back in 1971, we have invested in dynamic programming that constantly evolves and engages young people in the process of identifying and addressing their needs and building on their assets and strengths.
Our commitment to acting on crucial opportunities led to early social enterprise ventures including a print shop and coffeeshop; the creation of Connect Force, a positive youth-led hip-hop community; the pioneering development of Girl World, a safe and empowering space for young women; and much more, including recent successes integrating much needed mental health support into youth development programs.
EXAMPLE: Alternatives staff have created a curriculum for a Social Media Bootcamp which would leverage young people’s fascination with sites such as Facebook and Twitter to teach them about internet marketing, writing, and online research, and prepare participants to advise area businesses and nonprofits in their efforts to create social media campaigns.
With your support, the Board could approve the technological and infrastructure upgrades, staff time, and youth stipends required to carry out this program through the Opportunity Fund!