North Lawndale Community Connections Caregiver Clusters Evaluation
Illinois Action for Children
The North Lawndale Community Connections (NLCC) program aimed to build social capital among neighborhood groups of parents and caregivers of young children through weekly school-based seminars supplemented with case management activities that focused on parents’ and caregivers’ goals for themselves, their children, and their community. The NLCC program was designed by Illinois Action for Children (IAC) and was piloted during the 2012-2013 academic year in two schools in the North Lawndale community of Chicago. The program returned to North Lawndale in 2014-2015 and was implemented in three public elementary schools in Chicago’s North Lawndale neighborhood. The seminars offered participants opportunities to meet other parents and caregivers, connect with resources in the community, build leadership and advocacy skills, brainstorm and collaborate together around solutions to barriers, gain new knowledge related to parenting and child development, and expand their networks of support. The program also aimed to increase parental involvement and engagement in early childhood programming and young children’s learning experiences.
Erikson Institute collaborated with Illinois Action for Children to conduct a program evaluation of the NLCC program. The goal of this effort was to gather multiple perspectives on the NLCC program in order to inform future program replication and improvement.