Get to Know Family Focus

Learn how Family Focus helps nurture children by strengthening families. We help caregivers put the pieces of parenting together, one piece at a time.



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Success Stories

A.D. came to Illinois with her son, Javier. She did not speak English, making her feel out of place and lonely. She became a participant in Family Focus’s programing and drastically improved her life. A.D. learned English and gained parenting knowledge. She now has three daughters, all of whom have been a part of the Family Focus programming preparing them for pre-school and beyond.




  • I wanted to dance just like other girls did. But we didn't have the money and transporation for dance class. [Family Focus] helped me overcome this obstacle.

                            -Haide, Age 13


    I love ballet [but] the classes are too expensive for my family...and the program [at Family Focus] helped me to get a scholarship. I am more responsible and I put more effort into what I do.

                            -Juliana, Age 11

  • "[My dream] is for my sons to go to college, my daughter too, so they can have a better life.” Rivera looked at her newly-secured citizenship certificate. “It’s not too late for me either now that I have this,” Francisca Rivera

  • “I made a good choice in coming to the Family Focus program,” reflected Jamilla Chatman, “I feel better than what I did. I was failing, but now I’m doing a lot better!”

  • "Before the class, I didn't know walking, standing and leaning may help stimulate contractions, and that kneeling may relieve back pain and hemorrhoids. I'm glad I attended the Prenatal classes." - Antone Robinson, teen father

  •  "I was thankful my doula was at my birth. I thanked her for her services before she left the hospital".-- Gabrielle Young, teen mother


Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2015


Strategic Plan Executive Summary

From a single drop-in center in Evanston, Illinois, Family Focus now provides holistic family support services to over 20,000 individuals through programming, outreach, and crisis services.


Family Focus Evanston Annual Benefit 2017

Event Date: 
Saturday, April 29, 2017 - 6:00pm
Promote on: 
Featured News
Event Teaser: 

Family Focus Evanston Annual Benefit 2017

      Hilton Garden Inn

      1818 Maple Ave, Evanston, IL 

      6:00 PM - 11:00 PM 

Tickets are $125

Ticket price includes dinner, live auction and the opportunity to support and congratulate award recipients Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl, Councilwoman Delores Holmes, Family Focus STEM volunteers and participant family The Meeks. MC will be Tim Rhoze, artistic director of the Fleetwood-Jourdain Theatre. Entertainment by DJ Tom Sexton.

If you would like to purchase individual tickets to the event, click here. For questions, please contact Cheryl Brown at 847-475-7570.

If you are unable to attend the event but wish to make a donation to Family Focus Evanston, click here


URGENT: Tell Congress Not to Cut Funding for Afterschool Programs

URGENT: Tell Congress NOT to Cut Funding for Afterschool Programs

With the proposed federal budget cuts, funds for 21st Century and other afterschool programming are being threatened. The 21st Centruy program needs the continued support of the current $1.16 billion funding from the 21st Century Community Learning Centers initiative in order to ensure that two million in-need children around the United States and over 50,000 children in Illinois don't lose access to the local school-community partnerships that provide quality after school and summer learning opportunities.

21st Century afterschool programs are locally designed, innovative support programs that meet critical needs for low-income students and families. Programs also provide a safe haven that helps kids avoid risky behaviors during the hours of 3-6pm, when juvenile crime peaks. 

Family Focus has recieved 21st Century Community Learning Centers grants since 2003.  In that time, 45 Illinois schools have provided services from Pre-K to 12th grade students and their families before school, after school, on weekends, on non-school days and during the summer. In 2016, Family Focus' 21st Centruy programs leveraged over $833k in additional resources for students and families for materials, staff training, and other program support. These programs served 16 schools and 1,711 students.

The results of this program speak for themselves:

  • 40% of students increased their reading and math grades
  • For students with failing math or reading grades (D or F), 52% increased their grade to a C or better by the end of the school year
  • 67% of students improved their participation in class and academic preformance
  • 85% of parents reported their child had improved behavior and attitudes towards schools

(Family Focus 21st Century Local Annual Evaluations, 2016)

How to help:

Use these personal success story templates that our partner ACTNOW created for parents and youth to fill out. Congressional staff are asking for personal testimonies showing the success and impact of afterschool programming to fight these budget cuts. Print and fill out these forms and return them to Alisha Flores at our central office (Family Focus, Inc. 310 S Peoria St, Ste 301, Chicago, IL 60601) ASAP. Please include a picture of you and your child if you can!

We also encourage you to write letters to your representatives using this template that includes data from Family Focus' 21st Century programs about the benefit of afterschool programs, and urges Congress not to pass the proposed budget. 

To find your representatives, select the 21st Century program center your child is affiliated with:

Or, look up your representatives at

Family Focus, along with the thousands of other afterschool programs, thank you for helping to fight to protect the funding for these vital programs. For questions, please contact Alisha Flores


Olivia Shares Her Family Focus Story

"I was homeless at 18 and I was adopted and I was in foster care. My best is only what I’ve seen and what I’ve seen isn’t really good at all. It’s hard for me to unlearn that behavior. I was doing the same that was done to me. And I was trying to change, but you can’t really unlearn behavior unless you learn something new. A counselor suggested I take parenting classes at Family Focus."

To read Olivia's full story, click here.