FCB Chicago Helps Get Kids Off the Street

Why Pro Bono?
On Chicago's west side, where gangs, drugs and violence run rampant, stands Off The Street Club, Chicago's oldest boys and girls club. Founded in 1900, Off the Street Club (OTSC) offers a safe, supportive, loving environment where more than 3,000 4- to 18-year-old kids, from Chicago’s most dangerous neighborhood, can grow up as far off the street as their imagination can take them.

FCB Chicago’s involvement with OTSC dates back to 1902 when FCB’s predecessor, Lord & Thomas, made the agency’s first donation to the Club. In 1904, Thomas organized a baseball game benefiting OTSC, raising $570 and giving birth to an annual fundraising effort.

Process
OTSC relies solely on private donations. Fundraising throughout the year is vital to their operations. FCB Chicago works on three major fundraising efforts with OTSC throughout the year: the annual “Save our Summer” effort, the annual ‘Swing for the Kids” Golf Invitational and the Holiday Luncheon.

The annual ”Save Our Summer” raises money to send at least 600 children from the club to a sleep away summer camp—removing children from high-risk neighborhoods where heavy gun violence peaks during the hot summer months.

Since 2001, FCB Chicago has worked pro bono to create the theme and corresponding marketing materials for OTSC's Annual “Swing for the Kids” Golf Invitational. It's a huge fundraising event for the girls' programs at the club. Each year, in addition to creating the materials, FCB invites an LPGA pro to lead exclusive golf workshops.

FCB Chicago is also a member of OTSC’s Holiday Luncheon planning committee and is a sponsor for the event. For this year’s Holiday Luncheon, FCB Chicago was the lead agency and host and the agency introduced a new creative platform—The Hope Awards—honoring kids and inspirational donors. Nearly 1,000 guests attended the event and the luncheon earned a record-breaking $570,000—exceeding the $500,000 goal and breaking all previous fund-raising records.

FCB Chicago also created an inspiring song “Come Into the House” to convey the positive spirit, outlook and energy OTSC shares with its youth. The song was revealed at the Holiday Luncheon, and is an ongoing fundraising effort where all proceeds collected from downloading the song via iTunes and Google Play benefit the Club.

Results
FCB Chicago has helped raise more than $2 million dollars for the girls program, more than $3 million for getting underprivileged kids to summer camp and more than $6 million for the club through holiday event drives.

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