About Us


Chicago Commons’ mission is to partner with individuals, families, and communities to overcome poverty, discrimination, and isolation.

Founded by Graham Taylor in 1894, Chicago Commons was one of the original settlement houses serving immigrants on the city’s northwest side.

As with the original settlement house, Chicago Commons programs and services serve as the backbone of specific communities, including Chicago’s West Humboldt Park, Pilsen, Grand Boulevard, and New City (Back of the Yards) neighborhoods. These neighborhoods are impacted by high rates of poverty and limited educational and economic resources.

Each year, the agency serves 3,000 people through four programs – Child Development, Common Ground for Youth, Adult Education and Training, and Senior Care. The results are exponential—nearly 10,000 people are impacted by Chicago Commons annually, including parents, caregivers, and children of program participants. Nearly all of our program participants are low-income, and 77% live below poverty level.

Chicago Commons is a leading provider of early childhood education and senior care services. We also serve as a primary generator of sustainable jobs within low-income communities as we employ health workers just starting their careers and give a head start to people whose passion is to help seniors remain in their homes and maintain a higher quality of life.

Over the last decade, Chicago Commons has increased its level of involvement in neighborhood planning and community building. Beginning in 2010, Chicago Commons assumed a leading role in convening a coalition of public and charter schools, community organizations and residents to create the West Humboldt Park Educational Pathways initiative. Chicago Commons is also playing a leadership role in the Pilsen Educational Task Force and the Back of the Yards Quality of Life Planning Process.