Creating a Cycle of Opportunity

SGA Youth & Family Services helps children, families and communities facing great challenges to realize their potential. 

SGA helps break the cycle of adversity and provide families with enough opportunity to change their lives and their communities. Our Cycle of Opportunity is passed down through generations, building strong foundations for families in the communities we serve. See how SGA has changed the trajectory for one of our young families, then explore our comprehensive services listed below.

Bridges to Pathways

Bridges to Pathways supports youth in transition from the Department of Juvenile Justice, motivating them to change in their lives, engage in their community, and advance in their career and education pathways while reducing recidivism. Bridges to Pathways components include daily academic enrichment activities, employability skills training and social-emotional development.

Brighton Park Youth Services

Brighton Park Youth Services provides community-based mental health counseling to students enrolled in local elementary schools. Services include individual and group counseling, conflict resolution and violence prevention to deter gang affiliation.


Funded by the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership, through WIOA (Workforce Investment and Opportunity Act), Chi-Works provides job training for youth, ages 16 to 24, who are not in school. Services include workplace training, job placement and wrap-around support services. Chi-Works services are provided throughout Cook County with Chicago’s south region as the main focus area.

Chicago Young Parents Program

CYPP serves young parents, ages 16 to 24, whose children participate in Early Head Start or Head Start programs. Parents receive on-the-job training to become a Head Start aide, as well as education coaching and job placement services.

Dually-Involved Youth

A nine-month program serving youth who are dually-involved with the Department of Children & Family Services and juvenile justice system, financed through a Pay for Success model. Youth ages 11 to 17 receive care coordination, one-on-one behavioral health sessions and family meetings, with the goal of reducing days spent in residential centers while improving overall wellbeing.

Early Advantage

Early Advantage works with pregnant and parenting mothers and fathers to become their child's first and most important teacher. Goals are to prepare children for success in school, encourage parent/child bonding, promote parenting skills, link parents with resources and offer social-emotional support. Offered in partnership with the Chicago Board of Education.

Early Childhood Mental Health Counseling

Early Childhood Mental Health Counseling supports social-emotional trainings and support within the city's Early Head Start and Head Start programs. Parents and teachers learn stress management and self-care while being trained on how to support children's needs. Available in Chicago Public Schools and center-based sites sponsored by the Chicago Department of Family & Support Services.

Early Head Start & Head Start

Early Head Start and Head Start provides early childhood development services for low-income children and their families, utilizing proven, home-based curriculum that empowers parents as their child's first teacher. 

Family Childcare Partnerships

Because of our expertise in early childhood education, SGA offers Family Childcare Partnerships, providing training and assessments of licensed childcare providers that enroll children funded through Early Head Start. Through this program, SGA is improving the quality of childcare.

Higher Sights

Higher Sights is a school-based college prep and social-emotional support program for 11th and 12th grade students who show enthusiasm for learning, perseverance to graduate, and motivation to pursue a college degree.

Juvenile Intervention Support Center (JISC)

JISC is a partnership between SGA and the City of Chicago, Chicago Public Schools and Chicago Police Department to prevent youth from entering or returning to the justice system. JISC offers comprehensive, wrap-around services to youth ages 10 to 17 and their families.


JISC RISE is a mentoring program for youth who have had initial contact with the juvenile justice system, in order to prevent further involvement. Clients, ages 14 to 17, are referred through JISC or police. Through mentoring, counseling and referrals, SGA is reducing recidivism while ensuring youth progress academically.

Juvenile Justice Collaborative

Currently a pilot program with Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, together with Cook County Juvenile Probation Department, TASC, the Illinois Collaboration on Youth, young people, ages 12 to 18, are referred to the Collaborative to receive appropriate mental health and other services instead of spending time in the juvenile justice system.

Midwest Healthy Start

Midwest Healthy Start supports pregnant and new parents in ensuring their children are healthy and well cared for, to prevent infant mortality. Serving children ages 0-2 and their parents. Funded by the Title V Maternal & Child Health Block Grant in partnership with Advocate Trinity Hospital, Chicago Family Health Center and Planned Parenthood.

Safe Passage

In partnership with Chicago Public Schools, Safe Passage provides adult guides from the community to increase student safety while traveling to and from school for class, extra-curricular activities, and after school programs. Safe Passage increases attendance and decreases violence incidents by creating a safe, secure and supportive school environment.

School-Based Counseling Clinics

In partnership with Mercy Hospital, SGA embeds counseling staff inside area high schools, providing crisis intervention and counseling in both individual and group settings.

School Collaboration Offering and Providing Emotional Supports (SCOPES)

The SCOPES initiative provides case management, counseling and crisis intervention services to youth in Academy in Urban School Leadership schools who may be experiencing social-emotional challenges. Individualized service plans focus on increasing communication skills and redirecting violent behavior, while supporting parents and school staff through workshops and resources.


STOP ACT provides grass-roots community organizing, promoting alcohol-, tobacco- and drug-free behavior among teens. Activities include safe prom events, forums for alcohol retailers on underage drinking, youth-led town hall meetings and alcohol-free youth programming.

Street Level Scholars

Street Level Scholars, also referred to as Intensive Youth Services, targets high school students who show promise but are exhibiting truancy from school, gang involvement, behavior or coping issues, or are involved in the juvenile justice system. Services include mentoring, counseling, case management and college/career readiness. 

Summer Youth Employment Program

In partnership with Mayor Rahm Emanuel's One Summer Chicago, the Summer Youth Employment Program provides job training, placement and supervision to 200-300 youth each summer, from May through mid-September.

Woodlawn Resource Center

In partnership with the Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH), SGA provides comprehensive services at Woodlawn Resource Center, including Early Head Start, Head Start, tutoring, ACT preparation, career development, wellness education, behavioral health services and resident engagement. Through this comprehensive support, children are prepared for Kindergarten, youth are made ready for college or careers and families improve their…

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