Promoting Unity, Strategy and Non-Violence

The Checkmate Violence Initiative acknowledges the potential of our children rather than treating them as “problems” to be solved. Through chess center programs we have witnessed over and over again remarkable transformations of children from positions of hopelessness, anger and self-destruction to positions of leadership, hope and empowerment.

The need for our program is great. An estimated 50,000 kids citywide spend between 20-25 hours a week alone after school – with the most dangerous hours between 3 pm and 6 pm. These unsupervised young people are much more likely to be the victims of crime or become involved in risky behaviors. Recent youth violence in Chicago provides strong impetus for improving the lives of the city’s youth.

The Checkmate Violence Initiative will be implemented city-wide through strategic partnerships with community and governmental organizations coming together to address the need to bridge the educational divide, stop youth violence, keep kids in school, while teaching them fundamental skills that will help them make the right choices throughout their childhood, adolescence and on into young adulthood.