Erie Neighborhood House

Chicago, IL   |


Erie Neighborhood House promotes a just and inclusive society by strengthening low-income, primarily Latino families through skill-building, access to critical resources, advocacy and collaborative action.

Our core values are:
- To affirm the dignity and capacity of all persons to reach their fullest potential.
- To strengthen the voice of the disenfranchised in shaping their future.
- To embody a spirit of service and respect.
- To forge creative solutions and promote social change.

Ruling year info


Principal Officer

Mrs. Kirstin Chernawsky

Main address

1701 W Superior Street

Chicago, IL 60622 USA

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NTEE code info

Neighborhood Center, Settlement House (P28)

Kindergarten, Nursery Schools, Preschool, Early Admissions (B21)

Ethnic/Immigrant Services (P84)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Early Childhood Education

Erie House has blazed trails in finding solutions to the pressing need for affordable, high-quality child care for low-income families in the Chicago metropolitan area. Our child care programs focus on healthy learning and development for young children, while their parents are working, attending school or training for a new career.

What's particularly unique about our Early Childhood programs is that beyond education, we provide our children holistic and professional attention. With full-time social workers and psychologists on hand, we ensure that children also have the cognitive and emotional ability to grow.

Population(s) Served

Hosting over 200 participants annually, the School-Age Program is grounded in individualized attention and a choice-based curriculum that fosters independence and responsibility in children ages 5-12. Whether it’s cooking and nutrition, sports and music, science and computers or something else, we provide the opportunity for youth participants to build skills and develop new interests through 3-4 different activities per day.

Program Goal:
The School-Age Program provides children access to new technology, sports, and literacy initiatives. It also gives them the unique opportunity to interact with their peers, while developing relationships with Erie staff and child care workers through a wide range of activities, educational and cultural field trips and family outings.

Accredited by the National After School Association, the Erie House School-Age Program cultivates strong connections to schools and parents, integrates technology and Illinois State Board of Education learning standards into core activities, and facilitates exposure to new experiences and life skills.

The School-Age Program contains two sub-programs:

The READS literacy initiative operates at Erie House's Little Village and West Town locations. Formerly known as Partners for Reading, READS is designed to improve children's literacy skills—specifically vocabulary, phonics and reading comprehension. Program participants meet two hours weekly with a reading specialist, who guides the children through customized literacy-building activities.

Super H:
Over the course of 10 to 12 weeks, 7- to 12-year-old students enrolled in our Super H program will learn to practice better nutrition, become more active, build their self-esteem and ultimately obtain better overall wellness through a curriculum focused on super foods, exercise and educational field trips.

And with family-oriented events like cooking workshops, berry picking, and trips to the museum, parents are empowered to take an active role in their children's wellness as they share new experiences with them and reinforce healthy habits.

Population(s) Served

Empowerment through education is at the heart of all Erie programming, and our youth development programs are an integral component of Erie’s work to build stronger communities. Youth Options Unlimited (YOU) is an after-school expanded learning program for at-risk youth ages 12-18. YOU is a safe, supportive and enriching environment that both supplements and enhances formal classroom activities, while also stimulating a close-knit familial structure. YOU programs spark an interest in learning and improve academic and life skills; provide opportunities for peer mentoring and leadership development; and also facilitate safe, recreational alternatives.

To meet youth at their unique developmental stage, while also engaging their parents and caregivers, YOU offers the following:

TEAM (Tutoring to Educate for Aims and Motivation) mentoring program:
Providing youth grades 7-12 with focused, academic support through weekly one-on-one tutoring sessions with mentors from a variety of professional fields

STEM Initiative:
Math intensive workshops, science club, STEM Saturday workshop series, intentional recruitment of TEAM mentors in STEM careers, and Youth Career Day.

Scientist for Tomorrow:
Scientist for Tomorrow is a STEM program for middle school youth run in collaboration with the Science Institute at Columbia College Chicago.

Gender-specific support groups:
Open dialogue on issues such as depression, sexuality, health and stress.

Guidance from Chicago School of Professional Psychology externs.

Youth Council:
Develops YOU policy and plans Semester of Service, fundraisers and field trips.

Multi-media apprenticeship in which teens learn elements of photography, video, design and journalism

On selective enrollment high schools, time management, leadership and resume writing.

Parental Support:
Support on a variety of topics such as domestic violence, parent-child communication, high school and college admission.

Basketball and soccer leagues, volleyball and softball.

Population(s) Served

At Erie we believe in the importance of education throughout the lifespan. That is why we offer a multitude of Adult Programs that all provide participatory, outcomes-based education that promotes economic advancement, fosters community leadership, and encourages civic engagement.

Citizenship and Immigration Program:
Assisting adult immigrants on the path to becoming United States citizens.

Community Literacy and Tutoring:
Empowering adults though peer based literacy and learning tutoring.

English as a Second Language (ESL):
Helping individuals to both learn English and improve their existing skills.

Technology Education:
Teaching adults both basic and advanced computer skills in order to improve computer literacy and job skills.

Population(s) Served

To help improve the lives of our community members and their families, we launched Pathways to Success (PTS)—a workforce training and career preparation program.

Since 2007, PTS has been helping our Adult program participants bridge the gap between education and the workforce by empowering hundreds to improve their literacy, become proficient in new technology and ultimately earn certification in desirable fields, like healthcare, manufacturing and technology.

Achieving long-term employment and livable wages is no longer just a dream for many of our participants—it’s a real opportunity—because the skills and training they receive open new doors and make it possible. Workforce Development offers:

Manufacturing: Bridge to Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Career -- West Town:
Erie’s Manufacturing Bridge class targets the Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Machinist occupation. Students may choose other careers in manufacturing for their advanced training as well. This 14-week integrated training module prepares participants for an advanced training Certification Program as well as for entry level jobs that will lead to advanced hands-on training in the field.

Healthcare: Bridge to Medical Assistant Careers -- West Town and Little Village:
Erie’s Health Care Bridge class targets the Medical Assistant profession. However, students may choose other careers in the Allied Health Care field. This is an intensive 20 weeks program in which participants improve their reading, writing and math skills through contextualized health care training that prepares them to pass placement exams for advanced training programs.

Technology -- West Town:
Erie Neighborhood House offers computer classes at basic, intermediate and advanced levels, including hardware. Basic computer classes are taught in Spanish. Participants learn technology skills needed for their everyday life, such as using internet, as well as skills that help broaden their employment opportunities, such as how to create documents and work with spreadsheets.

Population(s) Served

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can be challenging for all ages. At Erie House, we recognize the importance of wellness for our participants and community. We’re committed to helping them to achieve better health, wellness, self-esteem and confidence by offering the following programs:

Parent Council:
Our Parent Council strives to empower Erie House families with organizing tools and a voice on issues that matter most to them, from education to childcare to community violence to economic opportunities. We facilitate this meaningful dialogue and action through town hall meetings, visits with elected officials and advocacy for funding of programs that invest in stronger, more vibrant communities for the population we represent.

Super H:
Through the Super H program, over the course of 10-12 weeks, our 7-to-12 year olds will learn to practice better nutrition, become more active, build their self-esteem and ultimately obtain better overall wellness through a curriculum focused on super foods, exercise and educational field trips. With family events like healthy cooking, berry picking, and trips to the museum, parents are encouraged to participate and share new experiences with their children.

Super H-itos:
Teaching children about health and wellness at an early age plays a critical role in laying a foundation for future habits and behaviors. And as a way to build their knowledge on this important matter, Erie offers those enrolled in child care - as well as their parents - the opportunity to improve their overall nutrition, increase movement and boost self-esteem through the Super H-itos program.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

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National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) - 5 Year Accreditation 2010


Top 25 Hispanic Nonprofits in the United States 2012

Hispanic Business Magazine

Affiliations & memberships

National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) 2012

Afterschool Alliance 2012

United Way Member Agency 2012

National Council of La Raza (NCLR) - Affiliate 2012

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of individuals and families impacted annually.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year

Number of participants counseled

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Overall, Erie House aims to continue offering quality services to low-income families and individuals, growing our reach and increasing the number of participants served while improving curriculum, services, and network referrals offered. In particular, we look forward to expanding our presence in the Little Village community by creating an improved community space offering comprehensive family services.

• The Early Childhood Education program will serve 180 children (ages 2-5); 80% of children will meet or exceed all Teaching Strategies GOLD expectations in literacy, language development, math, and gross motor skills; 80% of five year olds will meet State of Illinois standards for kindergarten-readiness; 80% of parents will actively participate in at least two parent conferences during the school year.
• The Expanded Learning Program will serve 200 children (ages 5-18); 60% of youth will maintain their GPA; 40% of youth will improve their GPA; 100% of seniors will graduate high school.
• The Little Village READS program will serve 40 children in grades first through third; 80% of students will increase their oral reading fluency; 60% of participants will demonstrate at least one reading grade level improvement.
• The Adult Literacy program will serve 765 adult learners (150 ESL, 200 Community Literacy, and 415 Technology Education); 70% of ESL students will improve their scale score on the Basic Education Skills Test (BEST); 50% of Community Literacy participants will advance a minimum of one level (out of seven levels) on BEST; 75% of technology education participants will graduate the program.
• The Workforce Development program will serve over 200 adult learners offering six bridge classes (manufacturing, health care, and IT); 61 graduates will be placed in employment with an average wage of $12/hr; 60% of placed employees will meet at least 90-day job retention.
• The Super H health programs will serve 215 children (ages 2-12) and 40 parents by providing nutrition and healthy lifestyle education; 100% of participants will be exposed to 24 "super foods" through fun, hands-on activities; 75% of children will improve their nutritional knowledge; 40% of parents will report a change in food behavior.
• Citizenship & Immigration services will enroll 300 students in citizenship education classes; 500 individuals will be assisted with preparing and filing citizenship applications; six community partners will be engaged with DACA education outreach.

To ensure the success of our programs and services, Erie House utilizes multiple evidence-based evaluation and measurement tools. The Early Childhood Education program, in accordance with Illinois' early education standards, uses the Creative Curriculum assessment and Teaching Strategies GOLD evaluation to measure specified objectives in areas of development, learning, and physical, social, emotional, and cognitive abilities. Our Expanded Learning Program uses the Survey of Afterschool Youth Outcomes (SAYO), which provides city-wide comparison data for participants' communication skills, problem-solving skills, and relationships with peers, along with report card data and pre and post participant surveys. The Technology Education and Workforce Development programs track participant accomplishments in computer literacy and job-training skills in addition to following changes in employment due to program participation. The Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE) is used for those participants as well as those who participate in ESL instruction and Community Literacy services along with BEST. Erie House's rigorous evaluation system ensures quality assurance and continual program development and improvement.

To further support our programs, Erie House participates in a benchmarking collaborative with six other social services organizations in Chicago that collaborate to strengthen service delivery and organizational capacity. Using the shared participant and outcome-tracking database, Efforts to Outcomes (ETO), the collaborative is identifying high-performing areas for sharing best practices, with the ultimate goal to increase program quality city-wide. Erie House believes that program evaluation is the only way to remain accountable to our participants and funders by ensuring quality services.

• In our Early Childhood Education program, 100% of children received healthy breakfasts and lunches 5 days a week; 80% of children improved screening scores across developmental domains, and 4 out of 5 five-year-olds tested as "kindergarten ready;" and 80% of parents were actively engaged in the program.
• In our School-Age program, 170 children participated in activities focused on self-esteem, leadership, autonomy, and social and emotional competence; 30 children participated in the READS program designed to improve literacy skills; and 67% of children maintained an academic GPA of 3.0 or higher.
• In our YOU program, 100% of YOU seniors graduated from high school and enrolled in college, 1 in 2 are choosing to pursue careers in STEM fields; 81% of YOU participants maintained or improved their GPA; and $29,275 in scholarships was awarded through the TEAM mentoring program.
• In our Adult Literacy program, 94% of ESL students improved their overall score on the Basic English Skills test; 331 adults improved their English language skills as a result of participating in the ESL and Community Literacy programs at Erie House; and 581 adults received computer literacy training through the Technology Education program.
• In our Workforce Development program, 45 students graduated from PTS Manufacturing and Health Care Bridge programs; 23 PTS graduates went on to complete advanced training programs; and 43 PTS graduates were placed in training-related careers earning family sustaining wages (average wage: $12/hr).
• In our Health & Leadership program, 216 children were introduced to 24 super foods through engaging, hands-on activities; 160 children received dental screening and were referred for follow-up care when needed; and 48 parents were recruited to participate alongside their children in the Super H curriculum, take family field trips and learn healthy new recipes.
• In our Citizenship & Immigration program, 5 citizenship classes were offered to prepare community residents for naturalization process; 786 participants completed and filed applications to become naturalized US citizens; and nearly 600 DACA related legal consultations were provided, resulting in 568 filed DACA applications.


Erie Neighborhood House

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


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Erie Neighborhood House

Board of directors
as of 04/13/2017
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Patty Perez

Monterrey Security Consultant, Inc.

Term: 2015 -

Board co-chair

John Van Pelt

The Northern Trust Company

John Hall

Goose Island Brewing Co.

Steven Fox

Norbridge, Inc.

David Tolen-Xolot

Erie Adult Programs

Sarah Rios

Erie Child Care

Jamila Baldwin

Comcast Cable

Nicolas Guzman

Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP.

Daniel Hartnett

Tax Commscope, Inc.

Bradley Hergott

Discover Financial Services

Sandy Pundmann

Deloitte & Touche, LLP

Craig Castelli

Caber Hill Advisors

Paul Gassel

Wrightwood Wealth Management, LLC

Ashley Galston

K&L Gates

Randy DeCoursey

Allstate Insurance

Joseluis Avalos

Chicago Department of Public Health

Librada Killian

JPMorgan Chase

Gail Taggart

L3 Hospitality Group/Lyfe Kitchen

Gisela Attlan

NUVEEN Investments

Beth Benjamin

Private Bank

Juan Campos

Teamsters Local 705

Khalil Hogan

VistaNational Insurance Group, Inc

Louis Leonardi

Beverly Bank & Trust Company

Asael Reyes

Erie Neighborhood House

Maria Rocha

Youth Programs

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes