Founded by Jane Addams in 1901, the Juvenile Protective Association (JPA) provides therapeutic services to youth in high poverty communities. Combining specialized SEL and mental health supports for students with helping teachers support students impacted by trauma, JPA greatly increases chances for positive life outcomes.
Why We Invested
High-quality social-emotional learning (SEL) and trauma-informed mental health services for youth are critical needs that have been exacerbated by the pandemic. Lurie Children’s Hospital estimated that 44% of parents consulted with their child’s primary care provider about mental health concerns between July 2020 and February 2021. Connect 2 Kids (C2K) offers a SEL and mental health approach that helps enhance educators’ relationship-building skills and their ability to meaningfully support children exhibiting behaviors that are often due to trauma and other adversities. After a recent pilot of C2K, the impacts of the program were found to be similar to JPA’s evaluation findings from over ten years of data on children who receive individual therapy from therapists in school settings. In addition to its compelling early outcomes, we believe that C2K has systems-level scale potential given the district’s recent rollout of a framework to ensure the collective wellness for all CPS students, staff, families, caregivers, and communities.
Looking ahead to the 2021-2022 school year, JPA plans to implement C2K in 13 partner schools. This translates to roughly 144 students. By year three, JPA aims to nearly 300 students in 25 schools.
Investment launched in September 2021. Management support project to begin later this year.