Each year at YNPN Chicago's Celebration, we recognize young professionals and nonprofits that have made an outstanding contribution to the Chicago nonprofit sector through exemplary leadership and involvement in the Chicago community. YNPN Chicago Celebration Award categories include Nonprofit of the Year, Associate Board of the Year, Young Nonprofit Professional of the Year, and Supervisor of the Year.
Last year, La Casa Norte was the recipient of the Nonprofit of the Year award. YNPN Chicago asked La Casa Norte staff members a few questions about what it meant to be nominated and win.
Tell us about your organization and the work you do in Chicago.
La Casa Norte's mission is to serve youth and families experiencing homelessness. We address the needs of people at every stage they may encounter, from being at-risk of homelessness to achieving stable permanent housing. Our work includes outreach, case management, support services, emergency shelter, transitional and permanent housing, rapid rehousing, and a youth in college initiative, using harm reduction, trauma-informed, best practices.
Why was it meaningful to you/your organization to be recognized by YNPN Chicago at the Celebration Awards?
2019 was a transformational year for La Casa Norte. The highlight – moving into our newly built Community Center and Housing Project, located in the Humboldt Park neighborhood. It was a long process and throughout that time, our staff continued to advocate and provide resources to the youth, families and communities we serve. Being recognized for our work, and the future of what we hope to achieve (and are!) was truly special and meaningful for all of us. We continue to display our award very proudly where all of our staff and visitors can see it!
What was your favorite part about Celebration last year?
The staff and our young professional associate board, The Next Generation Board, enjoyed seeing all the other organizations that were doing amazing work with some being our community partners. And of course, the moment when you hear that your organization won is a favorite moment too!
How did you get the word out for people to vote for your organization?
We worked diligently to send out e-communications and social media posts. We included it on our websites main page as well. We encouraged our staff, boards and all stakeholders to not only vote but share within their networks. It was definitely teamwork!
Know a great nonprofit? Nominate them for the 2020 Nonprofit of the Year Award now through March 27, 2020. You can see all of the past winners here and don't forget to buy your Celebration tickets today!