49th Ward Update
March 12, 2021

Good morning neighbors,

Yesterday marked one year since the World Health Organization declared the global pandemic we're all still living through. It's left me in a space of somber reflection. As a nation, we've lost over 500,000 of our family, friends and neighbors to the pandemic. Additionally, the loss of jobs, businesses and housing has widened the inequity gaps at every level of society. And the psychological and emotional toll of loss, trauma and uncertainty has heavily impacted each and every one of us.

But in looking back over this year, I can't help but also feel gratitude and a sense of pride in our community. A year ago this week, my office was convening neighbors from Protect Rogers Park and Northside Community Resources to set up a covid crisis response system. What started as a conversation around my conference table with friend and neighbor, Jim Ginderske, and Leslie Perkins and Torrence Gardner from my staff, quickly expanded into a wonderful group of 49th Ward neighbors creatively and quickly creating new systems to meet the needs that we anticipated because of coronavirus. As the Rogers Park Community Response Team (RPCRT), we recruited hundreds of volunteers, set up a 7 day/week multilingual hotline, raised over $60,000, delivered groceries and supplies to hundreds of neighbors on a weekly basis and distributed cash to neighbors who needed it. When everything was coming to a standstill and people were scared about how they were going to survive - our office and your neighbors took action. If you aren't familiar with the RPCRT, you should check them out. Every one of the dedicated volunteers who have participated in RPCRT deserves our deepest gratitude. Now, operating independently as a mutual aid organization, they're still helping Rogers Park neighbors and doing it well. Consider making a donation to the effort and follow them on Facebook to get involved.

Over the last year, nothing has been easy, no week has been routine or peaceful and every day brought new challenges and struggles for our community. But we're still here. And even though sometimes it may feel like you're just surviving, just barely getting by, remember that every one of us has adapted to monumental change and is stronger and wiser than we were a year ago.

The pandemic isn't over; we must continue to practice the health safeguards we've learned even as vaccinations become more readily available. It's also likely that we have a lot of changes and struggles ahead of us yet, but I'm more certain now than I was a year ago that we will overcome whatever comes our way if we stick together.

Until next week, stay safe and take care,

Maria Hadden
Alderwoman, 49th Ward

Celebrations & Appreciations
Let's celebrate and appreciate what's wonderful about our ward, the people, the places and accomplishments. We need this more than ever, so please, send us the people, orgs and actions that you want the ward to know about next week! Email us at
The Best Team Around
The 49th Ward staff has been phenomenal and I'm grateful for each and every member of our team. Over this last year, they've shown up to serve with extra patience, perseverance, ingenuity and a level of dedication that shows their love of our community. Thank you to Leslie, Danny, Torrence, Tiffany, Gina, Grayson, and Jackie!
A Year of Grief and a Year of Resiliency
This week, we hit the grim milestone of one-year since it became clear that COVID-19 was going to impact every aspect of our lives. 

The past year has been one full of grief and tragedy. In Rogers Park, we have lost 156 community members to COVID.  Their lives are more than just a data point. They were friends, family members, neighbors, and loved ones. 

This year we also saw neighbors come together to help one another, despite the need to social distance. At the beginning of the pandemic, my office worked with neighbors to launch the Rogers Park Community Response Team. The Response Team has evolved and adapted as many have with the prolonged pandemic. It now is being run by a group of neighbors committed to continuing the mutual aid efforts through the end of the pandemic and beyond.

We saw neighbors volunteer to do wellness checks for our senior residents at the peak of the pandemic to make sure they had the latest information and had the resources they needed to remain sheltered in place. As vaccines rolled out, volunteers and members with the Jane Addams Senior Caucus did phone banking to ensure our seniors were getting the information they needed on vaccines. 

We continue to see people do small acts of kindness to build community. Whether it was making food for a neighbor in need or creating an art display in their yard, Rogers Park has shown that the most devastating crisis in a century only makes our community stronger. I have been overwhelmed by the resiliency of our community and its outpouring of generosity throughout this pandemic. 

The past year has been tremendously difficult and traumatic. It has taken a toll on everyone in different ways. Please continue to treat one another with kindness, compassion, and patience.
Ward Updates
Committee on Economic, Capital and Technology Development Hosts Hearing on Guaranteed Basic Income Pilot for Chicago

The Committee on Economic, Capital and Technology Development held a hearing for a bold financial pilot for a Guaranteed Basic Income on Thursday. The $50 million investment proposed would make Chicago home to the nation’s largest publicly funded guaranteed income program. Alderwoman Hadden introduced the resolution for this hearing with Ald. Villegas (36) and Ald. King (4) last month.

Read about the hearing in news coverage: 

As the COVID-19 Pandemic has exacerbated the vulnerabilities of people and jobs across the Nation, Congress is depending upon local governments to help their communities rise above this economic crisis. The proposed guaranteed income program would reduce income volatility, pay debts or emergency bills, and increase the overall quality of life with less than 2% of the estimated total $1.9 Billion being allocated to the City of Chicago in the American Rescue Plan.

While the exact structure of the program has not yet been formally decided or determined, a guaranteed income program would distribute hundreds of dollars in monthly direct cash payments to hundreds-- potentially thousands-- of Chicago families. The momentum in Chicago matches a push for guaranteed income in cities across the country. 

A guaranteed income would empower struggling Chicago families to immediately attend to their most urgent needs. This cash would provide more than a quick fix to families; it would provide them with a sense of stability as we continue to see the impact of the economic fallout from COVID-19. I will be working closely with Chairman Villegas and Alderwoman King on the next steps to make this a reality for our residents.

Community Meeting on Corridor Development Initiative at Howard and Ashland March 16
A report showcasing the community-shaped vision for the site at Howard and Ashland will be presented during a virtual community meeting on March 16 at 6 pm.

Over 200 Rogers Park community members participated in workshops, surveys, and design kits throughout the process. We received a variety of input on what participants would like to see (and not see) on the site, with an overwhelming number of people emphasizing that they would like any future development to incorporate amenities for the community—including green space, an incubator, workforce development, and/or affordable housing. This initial report has been extremely valuable in identifying community preferences. Please continue to stay engaged, as there will be more opportunities to provide input and feedback as the process evolves

Please join us for the community meeting on March 16 for an update on the process and to review the report. Register in advance for the meeting at Spanish translation will be available. 
Submit Feedback on 1952 W. Morse Proposal thru March 28
On March 9, 2021, our office hosted a community meeting to discuss a proposed development and zoning change request for the property located at 1952 W. Morse We would like to hear feedback from you on the proposal.

To learn more about the proposal, view the presentation, and view the community meeting, visit the 49th Ward website. Submit feedback online at
1415 W. Morse Survey Results and Update
Thank you for taking the time to engage with our office by attending the community meeting last month and providing feedback on the proposal for 1415 W. Morse.

Our office received 86 responses to the online survey, with 60 percent of respondents supporting the proposal in its current iteration. As reflected in the infographic, the building's design, the impact on light, alley usage, and noise were the biggest concerns 49th Ward residents have about the proposal. Others, however, expressed strong support for the additional density in the neighborhood creating more support for local businesses and the addition of affordable and accessible units near the Red Line. 

Our office shared the feedback and input with the developer to see how it can be incorporated into the proposal. We are also in conversations with the Department of Buildings, Planning and Development, and the adjacent building owner on the best path to address the concerns respondents expressed in the survey. We will keep the community apprised of any proposed changes from the developer and continue to solicit feedback and host community meetings. The first meeting was only the first step in creating a long-term plan for the vacant lot. 

Stay tuned for further updates and the next steps. Please don't hesitate to contact us directly with questions at or 
Community Alert: Armed Robbery/Vehicle Theft
The 24th District reported a series of armed robberies and a car theft in the district that occurred the first week of March. If anyone has any information, place contact the Area Three Bureau of Detectives at 312-744-8263.
10-Week Entrepreneurial  Program
GROW is an entrepreneurial training program of Rogers Park Business Alliance. GROW helps entrepreneurs and existing business owners develop a comprehensive and implementable plan that's right for them. GROW helps entrepreneurs hone in their business plan and expand their understanding of how to navigate the always-changing business environment. Additionally, GROW provides expert guidance on implementing best practices and models that are key to business sustainability.

GROW: The Complete Program is 10 weeks long and takes place Wednesdays from April 7 to June 9, 2021 from 6 - 8 p.m.
All sessions are virtual and they include 3 foundation sessions and 7 specialty sessions. The sessions are designed to take a new business concept from idea to reality OR an existing business from normal to extraordinary!

An interview is needed in order to register. For more information contact Sheree Moratto at
COVID-19 Updates
As we continue to combat COVID-19 across the city, state, and country, we are bringing back our section with the most up-to-date information on the ongoing public health crisis and any changes that are being implemented to address it. Information on aid and relief programs will continue to be housed in the "Need to Know Info" section of this newsletter. 
Vaccination Appointments for Homebound Persons

People who are homebound can sign up online to get vaccinated against COVID-19 at their residence. Caregivers will also be vaccinated under the program.

To be eligible, a person must not be able to leave their home because it “requires considerable and taxing effort," and must fit one of these categories:

  • Be a senior OR a person with a disability that requires in-home assistance, and

  • Be a person who has to use adaptive equipment (like a ventilator, wheelchair, etc.) and/or accessible transportation to leave home.

​Homebound vaccinations will be administered by Chicago Firefighter emergency medical personnel. Vaccines are limited to those who are truly homebound and meet the above eligibility requirements. 

Fill out the homebound vaccine form online by clicking here

Essential Workers COVID-19 Vaccine Town Hall
Dr. Luna from CDPH will host an Essential Worker Town Hall on Monday, March 15, at 6 pm. The target audience is essential workers in groups 1b and 1c of the vaccination rollout. CDPH will share information on how and when to get a vaccine. 

The Town Hall will be streamed live on Facebook; you do not need a Facebook account to watch the livestream. 
United Center Vaccine Updates

The United Center, 1724 W. Madison, began to operate as a Federally-run vaccination site on Tuesday.  The site is open to individuals in groups 1a, 1b, and 1b+ of the vaccine rollout. The Department of Public Health is reporting that despite lower doses than initially expected, the site will eventually be able to administer up to 6,000 doses of the vaccine per day. 

The city will begin to post additional appointments on Zocdoc as they become available; however, CDPH is encouraging that seniors use the call center to book their appointments. The call center is receiving a large volume of calls and residents are encouraged to stay on the line despite the hold times. 

How to Book an Appointment

Book through the Call Center at 312-746-4835

  • The appointment call center (312-746-4835) is open only to Chicago residents ages 65 and older or those living in zip codes 60608, 60619, 60620, 60649, and 60652.
  • The call center hours are as follows:
    8 am - 8 pm Monday thru Saturday
    8 am - 4 pm on Sunday

Book through Zocdoc at

  • Residents in group 1a, 1b, and 1b+ can still book their appointments on Zocdoc's website. This includes anyone 65 and older. 

There is no onsite registration and you must have an appointment to receive a vaccine at the United Center.

How to get to the United Center:

Driving: Entrance to the vaccine site is in Lot E of the United Center, off of Madison. Parking is available in Lot A with a free shuttle to the vaccination site.

Uber: Offering ride credits

Uber is providing 20,000 Chicagoans with $40 ride credits to get to the United Center. After a Chicago resident books an appointment via Zocdoc, they will receive an appointment confirmation email which will also ask if they need transportation to their visit. If they answer yes, they'll receive ride credits from Uber which will work only for rides to and from the United Center that are within Chicago city limits. 

CTA: The closest L station to the United Center is the Ashland Green & Pink Line station. The closest bus stop to the United Center is at Madison and Paulina on route 20. You can get directions from your destination to the United Center on CTA's Plan My Trip website or using Google Maps.

CDPH Partners with Zocdoc to
Launch Vaccine Appointment Scheduler
The Chicago Department of Public Health has partnered with Zocdoc to create a more centralized platform where people can schedule vaccination appointments when they’re available. To view available appointments through Zocdoc at

At this time, this platform is showing available appointments at the city's Point of Distributions sites (PODS) and Rush University Medical Center. More information on where to locate other vaccination sites is contained below in this newsletter.
Three Ways Chicago Residents can Receive a COVID-19 Vaccine:
The City of Chicago began inoculating people in phase 1b of the vaccine rollout this week. Individuals in this group include essential frontline workers and residents aged 65 and older. 

There are three ways Chicago residents can receive a COVID-19 vaccine:
1. Your health care provider
Your first contact should be your health care provider, including your primary care provider, health clinic, or hospital where you have gotten medical care in the past. Over 350 health care providers have signed up with CDPH to distribute vaccine. Providers are also reaching out directly to schedule appointments with their existing patients, prioritizing those who are older with more underlying conditions. Health care providers can still sign-up to be vaccine providers.
2. Your pharmacy
The City of Chicago has provided vaccines to pharmacies across Chicago. These pharmacies each have their own registration link which can be found below.
The City of Chicago does not endorse any of the listed organizations. This list is provided only as a convenience. See the full disclaimer here.
3. Your employer
Specific employers in prioritized essential workers groups will be able to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine to their employees in 1b. CDPH is working directly with employers as vaccines become available. For example, first responders are already being vaccinated and others will begin soon. If you receive your vaccine through your employer, you will not need to take any other action. 
For those that have insurance but do not have a primary care provider, please check with your insurance company for a list of providers accepting new patients. One option is to enroll with one of Chicago’s many Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) if you do not have insurance. 

For especially vulnerable populations (e.g., those facing housing insecurity or undocumented immigrants), the city will partner with city colleges to set up PODs (points of distribution) to vaccinate residents. At this time, PODs are continuing to vaccinate health care workers included in phase 1a, and no appointments are available yet to those included in phase 1b. 

While the city has transitioned to phase 1b of the vaccination rollout, supply remains limited. Last week, CDPH informed aldermanic offices that they're currently receiving 34,000 doses of the vaccine a week, which amounts to roughly 5% of people in group 1b. This means that appointments are filling up fast. On Tuesday, President Biden announced that his administration is working to purchase an additional 200 million doses of the vaccine. Their goal is to have enough vaccine supply for the entire adult U.S. population by the end of the summer. 

You can track the vaccine data for the city of Chicago on CDPH's website by clicking here
Howard Brown Health Vaccine Appointments

Howard Brown Health is now offering the COVID-19 vaccine to established patients and community members who are essential frontline workers or age 65 or older. Reserve your vaccine appointment online.

Appointments may be rescheduled based on the availability of the vaccine. Due to supply, vaccination appointments are available at limited clinic locations in Chicago. The appointment for the second dose will be scheduled at the end of your first appointment.

All appointments are subject to change based on vaccine availability.

Details regarding the Howard Brown vaccination rollout plan will continue to change in the coming days. Please visit for the latest information regarding scheduling and availability.

Rush Medical Vaccine Appointments
Rush has been working with local and city officials to begin delivering the COVID-19 vaccine to its community, following the guidelines outlined by the Chicago and Illinois Departments of Public Health. Based on those guidelines, eligible people will include those 65 years of age or older and essential workers, including health care workers. 

To view available appointments at Rush Medical, visit their website.
Heartland Health Vaccine Survey
Heartland Health Center, located at 1300 W. Devon in Rogers Park, is a designated Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC). As we continue with the vaccine rollout for phase 1b, they will be giving the vaccine to established patients who meet CDC and IDPH guidance. 

At this time, Heartland Health has limited vaccines. They are currently contacting their highest risk patients in 1b to ensure that they're receiving their dose. As they receive more vaccines, they'll continue to reach out to the remaining eligible 1b patients. This meant that they're not currently accepting calls for vaccine appointments until they have a steadier supply of vaccines.

However, they are looking to support residents while they await more supplies. If you are interested in receiving the vaccine from Heartland Health Centers, please take a moment to complete their online survey. As soon as more doses become available, they will contact individuals who have completed this survey. 
Swedish Covenant Vaccine Waitlist Registry
Swedish Hospital has created a waitlist to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at their facility. At this time, they are preparing to vaccinate seniors ages 65 and older and those that still remain in group 1A. However, you may complete their online waitlist to receive more information as vaccine appointments become available. 

For more information and to sign up, visit Swedish Hospital's website.
Transportation for COVID-19 Vaccines
For seniors and people with disabilities who need assistance to access their COVID-19 vaccine appointment will be able to take advantage of transportation resources. 

Special Needs Chicago

Special Needs Chicago has wheelchair accessible transportation throughout the Chicagoland area (city and suburbs) to assist people with getting to their COVID vaccine appointment. Call 630-668-9999 for more information or click here to book a reservation

Uber to Provide Free Rides to Vaccine Appointments

Uber has partnered with Walgreens Pharmacy to make it easier for people who don't have a car or a nearby pharmacy to get their COVID-19 vaccine. Uber will offer free rides to Walgreens stores and clinics for those who book an appointment and live in an underserved community. Uber will work with community organizations, such as the Urban League, to determine underserved communities that will be eligible for free rides. Those organizations will then work to distribute codes that community members can use to get the free rides. 
Sign-Up for Chi COVID Coach
Our office has received several inquiries about how to register for a COVID-19 vaccine. At this time, the city does not have registration open. However, we recommend that folks sign up for the Chi COVID Coach, developed in 2020 by CDPH. As registration becomes available for a vaccine, Chi COVID Coach will notify you over text message with updates on the vaccine and how to receive one. 

The registration will walk you through four steps to sign up, including identifying any underlying health conditions that might put you at an elevated risk or if your occupation falls within an essential services category. To register, visit
Sign Up for CDPH's E-Newsletter
The Chicago Department of Public Health is dedicated to ensuring that all Chicagoans get trusted information about its local COVID-19 response. Sign up online for their email list and be among the first to receive press releases, current guidance, and other important information. 
How the COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine Works
The approved COVID-19 mRNA vaccines do not contain any live virus of COVID-19. Instead, scientists used the genetic sequence of the virus to create a blueprint of the COVID-19 virus. The virus will trigger the body to produce the spike protein in the COVID-19 virus, which will signal our immune systems to produce the proper antibodies and T cells to combat the RNA blueprint. This means that should an individual contract the COVID-19 virus after being inoculated, the body's immune system will already have stored the information necessary to combat the virus. 

When people receive a vaccination, they might feel some side effects as their immune systems respond to the spike protein. The most common side effects include swelling and some pain at the injection site as well as fever, chills, headaches, and fatigue. These side effects are temporary and indicate that the immune system is imprinting its response to combat COVID-19. 
State Eviction Moratorium Extended to April 3
Governor Pritzker announced that the State's eviction moratorium will be extended to March 6, 2021 as the COVID-19 crisis continues to impact our state and our country. 

On November 14, protections for Illinois tenants were changed under the latest eviction moratorium extension. Landlords can now file evictions unless tenants give them a written declaration that they should be protected by the COVID Eviction Moratorium. The Lawyers Committee for Better Housing. Tenants can use IDHA's declaration template to provide their landlord with written notice that they've been financially impacted due to COVID-19. That declaration is available online

The Department of Housing has put together a Know Your Rights website for tenants who are facing illegal lockouts during the eviction moratorium. The Lawyers Committee for Better Housing has also put together information for tenants facing an illegal lockout and may be able to provide legal assistance to income-eligible tenants. Learn more on their website here
Updates to the Emergency Travel Order

The Chicago Department of Public Health announced updates to the Chicago Emergency Travel Order. Effective Friday, January 15, 2021, states will only be categorized as yellow or orange. Previously, the city had three category levels for the Emergency Travel Order.

The updates to the order are meant to simplify the message by putting states into one of two categories. Regardless of which category a state falls into, CDPH is still advising that people avoid any kind of travel as we see COVID-10 cases surging across most of the U.S. Additionally, the new COVID variant that is more transmissible has now been detected in at least 8 states, including Indiana and Wisconsin. 

Anyone traveling from a state on the Orange list is directed to obtain a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 72 hours prior to arrival in Chicago or quarantine for a 10-day period (or the duration of their time in Chicago, whichever is shorter).  They must practice strict social distancing, mask-wearing, and avoid any in-person gathering. Anyone traveling from a state on the Yellow list is not required to quarantine or provide a pre-arrival test. However, they should practice strict mask-wearing and social distancing.

The lists are updated every two weeks based on state and Chicago case averages. There are no travel restrictions within Illinois. However, non-essential travel to the areas of high incidence is discouraged. If essential travel is needed, follow the prevention techniques such as using a face covering, frequent hand washing/sanitization, and maintaining social distancing.

Please visit for additional information.
Latest Information on COVID-19 from the
Chicago Department of Public Health

For the latest information on COVID-19 in Chicago, visit the Chicago Department of Health's (CDPH) website at For the latest information on COVID-19 in Illinois, visit the Illinois Department of Public Health's (IDPH) website

Community Aid
Honeybear Cafe Hosting Kids Art Supply Drive
Honeybear Cafe has collaborated with artist Kristianna Jacques to launch a kids art supply donation drive. The supplies will go to kids living in the Rogers Park community to foster their creativity. 

Honeybear Cafe has set up a contactless donation box in their entryway. Items can be dropped off between 8 am and 2 pm Wednesday through Monday.  Any donation is appreciated. 

Commissioner Gainer's Annual Women's Toiletry Drive
Commissioner Bridget Gainer is hosting her annual women's toiletry drive. Please consider donating travel-sized products of shampoo and conditioner, soap, shower gel, deodorant, and body location to a drop off location to help women that are currently incarcerated. For more information, call Commissioner Gainer's office at 312-603-4210 or email 
Community Engagement Opportunities
Celebrate & Honor Black Women in the HIV Movement
The Positive Women's Network invites you to celebrate Black women and their tireless efforts in the HIV movement.  The Positive Women's Network is a nationwide community of women living with HIV. Their mission is to prepare and involve all women living with HIV, in all our diversity, including gender identity and sexual expression, in all levels of policy and decision-making. For more information, visit
Share Your Yard!
Calling all homeowners! Share your yard for food growing! The Rogers Park Yard Sharing network helps connect gardeners to homeowners with unused yard space. They are currently seeking interested homeowners to share their yard and become a part of the Yard Sharing Network.

Interested homeowners can fill out this Google Form. You can learn more about this process and The Rogers Park Yard Sharing Network on our website. Please email with questions. 
CHA Community Alliance Affordable Housing Workshops
The CHA Community Alliance is hosting a series of virtual workshops throughout the month of March. The workshops will focus on CHA family housing, senior housing, and waitlist management. 

For more information, contact 773-245-4107 or email To register for a workshop, visit
Community Makery Creating "4-H Real Talk" Video Series
Community Makery is partnering with 4-H University of Illinois Extension to develop a "4-H Real Talk" video series as part of the ongoing Illinois 4-H DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) initiative.

They are searching for black & brown high school youth who want to share their voice about the impact of racism in their lives. If this project is of interest to you, please email Mimi at
Planning Ahead Discussion March 16
In partnership with Pride Action Tank, the Center for Disability & Elder Law is hosting a discussion titled "Planning Ahead: Securing your Future with Advance Directives and Estate Planning." The event will be held on Zoom on March 16 from 5:30-6:30 PM. While anyone is welcome to attend, LGBT elders and individuals living with disabilities can sign up for an appointment with a volunteer attorney to complete Powers of Attorney and a will intake. 

For more information and to register, visit
Read what's going on at Edgewater Village!
You're invited to stay connected with Edgewater Village Chicago. There's no membership fee, our programs are free and we welcome everyone. This month we're offering movie chats, coffee and conversation, healthy aging presentations, Greek dancing, and other interesting programs on Zoom. Read more about them and register here.  And, to stay in the know, sign up for our weekly newsletter
Loyola Community Nursing Center Hosting Series
on Community Health and Nutrition
The Loyola Community Nursing Center is hosting a virtual educational series on community health and nutrition throughout the months of February and March. Join a session to learn more about a variety of topics. To join a virtual session, visit
Government Corner
With the COVID-19 pandemic, there is a lot of information and resources available to people at all levels of government. To make sure you're receiving all the information to help you through this time, please consider signing up for the following newsletters or keeping your eye on the following pages. See something that should be added to this section? Email it to the office at 

City of Chicago Resources:
City of Chicago Coronavirus Resource Center Website
City of Chicago Coronavirus Updates Distribution Sign-Up
CPS COVID-19 Resources & Updates
Chicago Park District COVID-19 Response Page
BACP COVID-19 Resource Page

Cook County:
Cook County COVID-19 Response Website
Contact Commissioner Suffredin's Office
Commissioner Gainer Newsletter Sign-Up

State of Illinois:
State of Illinois COVID-19 Response Website
Sen. Steans Newsletter Sign-Up
Rep. Cassidy Newsletter

Federal Government:
Sign-up for Congresswoman Schakowsky's newsletter
Federal Government COVID-19 Response Website
Need to Know Info
Each week we've been updating this section with the rapid information coming down from all levels of government. This has resulted in a long email with the information running for several weeks. To shorten the length of the newsletter and provide the freshest content, we have archived all the COVID-19 newsletters on the 49th Ward website. You can also refer to the Rogers Park Community Response Team's website, where resources and information are abundantly available for our neighbors. 
IHDA Offering Student Loan Forgiveness
for Aspiring Homeowners
The Illinois Housing Development Authority has launched a $25 million Smart Buy program that will help 500 to 1,000 young individuals buy homes by forgiving some of their student loans. The program would allow those who meet income requirements may receive up to $40,000 to pay their loans to purchase a home. Recipients would be required to live in the home for at least three years. 

For eligibility requirements, FAQs, and to apply, visit IHDA's Smart Buy website.
HOPE Inside Offers Financial Counseling

Chicago City Treasurer Melissa Conyears-Ervin has partnered with Operation HOPE, the nation's preeminent financial counseling and aid organization founded by John Hope Bryant, to launch HOPE Inside.

HOPE Inside is a year-long initiative offering credit and money management resources for free to all Chicago residents and small business owners. HOPE Inside will provide complimentary services and education to those who need assistance on debt management, credit score improvement or are facing financial challenges. HOPE Inside will provide a mixture of programming and services offered by skilled financial coaches and speakers to include:  

  • Financial Literacy and Development Workshops focused on creating a personal budget, learning to read and correct errors via your credit report, homeownership steps, and more. 
  • Coaching Sessions to help you recover from debt and low FICO scores, prepare a budget analysis, establish a plan of action to resolve credit issues, and much more. 
  • Access to the 700 Credit-Score-Initiative will transform participant's finances and prepare them for future financial success, possibly raising scores by 120 points over 18 months of active counseling. 

The HOPE Inside initiative will counsel residents and business owners on the language of money, creating a budget, developing customized action plans around building their businesses, buying homes, and repairing credit scores. Their counseling will empower people to make more informed decisions with their finances to prepare for emergencies, save money on expenses, and build long-term wealth. 

Register online to join HOPE Inside for a workshop on Wednesday, March 17, at 12 pm. For more information on the program, visit

2021 Professional Development Providers Program
The COVID-19 pandemic has placed unprecedented strain on the art and culture community; artists and organizations have suffered hardships that will require creativity and collaboration to overcome and rebuild towards equity. DCASE’s 2021 Professional Development Series is being restructured in response to this critical need. Now more than ever, artists and organizations need increased access to resources that will help them rebuild and recover.

The goal of DCASE’s Professional Development Program is to support free programs that provide resources, tools, and training that contribute to artists and arts organizations' professional growth and help them respond to the current needs. Increasing access to training, education, and opportunities for emerging artists and small businesses is a priority.

Nonprofit and for‐profit arts and culture organizations and individuals can apply for grants to present professional development programs focused on artist career development and/or organizational operations across artistic disciplines. Project grants will support local creatives and presenting organizations that provide free and public professional development programming across discipline types.

The deadline to apply is Friday, April 2, at 5 pm. For more information and the application, visit
The City of Chicago Wants to Hear from
Taxicab, Ride-Hail, and Livery Drivers!
Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) launched a public chauffeur survey this week to learn more about taxicab, ride-hail, and livery drivers' experiences operating their vehicles in the city. They are looking for feedback to help shape the future of the industry in the city.

Please take a moment to complete the survey online at Survey responses will remain anonymous.
Chicago Monuments Project
Photo Credit: Block Club Chicago
Monuments and memorials have become a focal point for conversation, protest and activism in the city of Chicago. In response, the City has created a committee to review the city’s collection of monuments and recommend solutions. The Chicago Monuments Project intends to grapple with the often unacknowledged – or forgotten – history associated with the City’s various municipal art collections and provides a vehicle to address the hard truths of Chicago’s racial history, confront the ways in which that history has and has not been memorialized and develop a framework for marking public space that elevates new ways to memorialize Chicago’s true and complete history. To learn more and share your thoughts, please visit – and join the conversation on social media using #ChicagoMonuments.
File Your Taxes with Tax Prep Chicago
The City of Chicago will offer free, confidential tax help through mid-April in partnership with Ladder Up. Trained volunteer tax preparers can assist you in completing and electronically filing Federal and Illinois tax returns for Tax Year 2020 and, in some cases, for prior years. They'll also be able to help determine if you qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), Child Tax Credit (CTC), and other tax credits!

The tax filing deadline is Thursday, April 15! For more information, visit or call (312) 588-6900 to schedule an appointment and see if you qualify.
Need Help?
Call or email the Rogers Park Community Response Team!

The Rogers Park Community Response Team is an action-oriented group created in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. RPCRT was created by 49th Ward Alderwoman Maria Hadden in coordination with local service providers and community organizations. Partners include IL State Representative Kelly Cassidy, Protect RP, Northside Community Resources, Loyola Community Nursing Center, and hundreds of deeply committed community volunteers.

We are working together to support each other. We will do so, to the best of our combined ability care for all of our RP family, with fierce love and compassion. We want every Rogers Park resident to know that you are cared for and not alone.

Contact us at or call our Support Hotline at 773-831-7668. Volunteers are available to answer your questions and direct you to resources now.

Please also take a moment to look at the Rogers Park Community Response Team's robust website, This website acts as a centralized location where a variety of resources can live to help residents in the wake of COVID-19. 

Business Updates
Chicago Vendor Impact Fund

As part of the City’s efforts to increase the capacity and competitiveness of our local, diverse vendor community, the City is pleased to announce the launch of the $25 million Vendor Impact Fund. The Vendor Impact Fund will provide priority access for City vendors certified as Minority-Owned Business Enterprises (MBE), Women-Owned Business Enterprises (WBE), Veteran-Owned Business Enterprises (VBE), and Business Enterprises Owned or Operated by People with Disabilities (BEPD) to loans from the federal Small Business Administration (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and 7(a) loan program. The City and its partners will seek to provide all Vendor Impact Fund loan applicants with the best offer available and will work with applicants to determine which product is the best fit. All loan applications will be administered through Community Reinvestment Fund, USA (CRF) with the support of Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses.

For more information, eligibility requirements, and to apply, click here.  

Shuttered Venue Operators Grant

The Shuttered Venue Operators (SVO) Grant program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, signed into law on December 27, 2020. The program includes $15 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by the SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance.

Eligible applicants may qualify for SVO Grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant award of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees.

For eligibility requirements, more information, and to apply, visit the SBA's website.

COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loans
In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, small business owners, including agricultural businesses and nonprofit organizations in all U.S. states, Washington D.C., and territories can apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). The EIDL program is designed to provide economic relief to businesses currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue due to coronavirus (COVID-19).

For eligibility requirements, more information, and to apply, visit the SBA's website.
Payment Protection Program Application Now Open
The Small Business Administration (SBA) opened another round of Payment Protection Program (PPP) loans this week. The latest PPP loans were included in the second federal relief package passed in late December 2020.

On Monday, businesses that did not receive a loan during the first round of the PPP became eligible to apply for a First Draw PPP Loan at participating Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). On Wednesday, certain businesses that have already received a PPP loan through the first round became eligible to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan through a participating CDFI. After these first two tiers, PPP will open for applications through all participating lenders, including traditional banks.

As a reminder, businesses apply for Paycheck Protection Program loans through a bank, credit union, CDFI, or other lenders. Initially, businesses will only be able to use CDFIs to receive loans in order to promote access to capital. For a list of Illinois CDFIs, click here. Please note that some CDFIs may not be participating in the program- please contact your preferred lender to determine if they are participating. The program will then open up to all participating lenders, including traditional banks, at a later date.

To learn more about the PPP, please visit these links:
Rogers Park Business Alliance COVID-19 Resources

The site maintains updated information on how we can support our small business community as well as resources for businesses in how they can adapt during this unique and challenging time. From their site:

Rogers Park Business Alliance is proud of the caring, work ethic, dedication and resiliency of our community. We firmly believe that, together, we will meet the challenge that we are all faced with today and going forward.  

Out of an abundance of love and concern for the health of our community we are closing our offices. Based on recommended precautionary measures and public health guidelines, team RPBA will be working remotely until given the all clear. We are available via phone and email. We appreciate your patience at this time. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact our office at (773) 508-5885 or

You can view our growing list of Rogers Park businesses that are open and/or receiving donations. You can also checkout the Chicagoland Dining at a Distance list.

Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Scholarships
Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority is awarding college scholarships to the class of 2021. These will be awarded to African or African-American high school seniors that have. a3.0 or higher GPA and have been accepted into a 4-year university. The deadline to apply is March 19. For more information and to apply, click here.  
Apply to be a Mikva Summer Fellow
Mikva Challenge is seeking 17-20-year-olds for its Summer Fellows internship program. As a part of the Mikva Summer Fellows (MSF) program, you will be placed in a paid summer internship in the office of a city, county, state, or federal lawmaker. You will work 30 hours a week for 6 weeks between late June and early August, and be paid $15 per hour.

In addition to working in an elected official’s office, Mikva Summer Fellows will be part of a professional development cohort focused on developing work readiness skills including communication, collaboration, critical thinking, public speaking, and teamwork. Fellows will meet weekly with Mikva staff to create career goals, complete workforce readiness assessments, and track their progress in the program. Please submit your initial application HERE by April 10th. 
Employment Opportunities
Chicago Botanic Garden Employment Opportunities
The Chicago Botanic Garden has a variety of seasonal and year-round job opportunities. For more information, visit their careers page at Applications are accepted online only via  
Greencorps is Now Hiring!
Greencorps offers seven to nine months of employment and on-the-job training in ecological restoration, green infrastructure, tree care, and landscaping. Training happens both in the classroom and in the field with the Chicago Park District, the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, and other project partners. Graduates of the Greencorps program have gone on to work for major companies such as Cardno, Christy Webber, Safety Kleen, and AES. Typical job titles include Landscape Maintenance Foreman, Restoration Technician, Driver, Groundskeeper, Pesticide Applicator, and Hazardous Material Technician. To learn more about Greencorps and apply, click here.
LUCHA Hiring Outreach & Engagement Specialist
Organization Overview
Since 1982, LUCHA (Latin United Community Housing Association) an Illinois 501(c)(3) corporation has served thousands of moderate and low-income families with Affordable Housing Development, Emergency Housing Repair and Assistance, Home Buyer Counseling, Foreclosure Prevention and Legal Assistance.  LUCHA owns and operates 198 units of affordable housing in the West Town, Humboldt Park and Logan Square Communities of Chicago.

Program Overview
The Community Alliance Initiative is a program conducted in collaboration with the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) to work in targeted communities (Armour Square, Humboldt Park, Jefferson Park, Logan Square, and Rogers Park) with the goal of increasing the participation of Latinx, and other underrepresented groups taking advantage of CHA housing, business, and employment opportunities.

Job Role
  • Conduct outreach to targeted households and local community organizations, agencies, institutions, and elected officials
  • Schedule, promote, and hold workshops on CHA housing, business, and employment related programs.
  • Conduct follow up services with interested workshop participants
  • Enter and manage data regarding program participation
  • Maintain ongoing relationships with local collaborating groups
  • Support other LUCHA housing related initiatives when called upon
Educational Requirements
Required: Undergraduate degree (BA/BS).

Other Qualifications/Requirements
  • Bilingual (not limited to Spanish/English) highly desired.
  • Familiarity with client management systems
  • Experience with MS Office programs (Word, Excel, Outlook, etc.).
  • Must be effective public speaker
  • Social service, educational, or community organizing experience working in diverse lower income communities
  • Must be able to work in client centered manner and be able to identify and respond to specific client needs
  • Ability to work effectively in a team environment.
  • Willing to work flexible hours.
  • Owning a car with a valid driver’s license a plus.
  • Ability to represent LUCHA in a positive and professional manner at all times.
  • Residents of the target communities are encouraged to apply.
Contact: Maria Galarza, 773-276-5338 ext.#239 or
LUCHA is 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and an equal opportunity employer.  To learn more about LUCHA, please visit
City of Chicago Hiring:
Asphalt & Concrete Construction Positions
The City of Chicago is looking to fill positions for asphalt and concrete jobs. The city offers competitive compensation as well as benefits, including a pension and healthcare. For more information and to apply, visit the City of Chicago's careers page
Find a Career with S&C Electric Company
S&C Electric in Rogers Park is hiring several key positions to join their team. S&C Electric is a 100% employee-owned team seeking several team members in the Rogers Park community to keep the lights on across the globe.

To learn more and apply, visit
Doctors Test Centers (DTC) Job Opportunities

The Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) has long been an economic engine for the City and region at large. They recently announced that they will begin offering the most comprehensive COVID-19 testing of any airport in the country at O’Hare and Midway International Airports.

The program will require a workforce to fill the more than 100 available positions.  Doctors Test Centers (DTC) has been selected as the vendor to assist the CDA with the endeavor. They have a variety of employment opportunities open and are seeking applicants. For more information, visit DTC's website here

Alderwoman Maria Hadden | 49th Ward Service Office
1447 W. Morse Ave, Chicago, IL 60626
773-338-5796 |

Office Hours*

Monday: 9 am - 5 pm
Tuesday: 9 am - 5 pm
Wednesday: 9 am - 5 pm
Thursday: 9 am - 5 pm
Friday: 9 am - 5 pm
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed

*Please note the physical office remains closed due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. Our staff is working virtually from home and is happy to answer calls and emails.

Paid for and authorized by Maria for the 49th Ward.

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Alderwoman Maria Hadden · 1447 W. Morse Ave · Chicago, IL 60626 · USA