Rogers Park Community Response Team (RPCRT)

We are a collective of hundreds of volunteers, community organizations, and our local Alderwoman and her team, working to provide for our neighbors. We started in response to the coronavirus. We have a hotline, hundreds of volunteers, and a large number of ways that we disburse resources to our neighbors. Initially, we were doing grocery shopping for people who were high risk for the virus. Callers would reimburse shoppers. Over time, more people needed food to be donated. We have since converted to a twice-weekly grocery delivery of standardized boxes of food. We also have "depots" throughout the neighborhood for people who call the hotline needing items but are unable to afford them. We order in bulk and then our delivery people can simply go to our different depots hosted by different neighbors for no-contact pick up. This eliminated the need for volunteers to go into stores. We offer everything from toilet paper and cleaning supplies to anything families might need for babies and children. Our other programs include working to redistribute resources to families who need them. We have a Community Cash program where people can call the hotline to receive $50 for whatever purpose they need it for. We also have a program called Hardship Cash where we partner with organizations in the community who select different clients each week to receive $500. Our goal is to hand out $5,000 each week. We are trying to eliminate as many barriers as possible for people to access this money. We encourage organizations to focus on people who may not have access to other resources offered by the government or others. So the people chosen tend to be the most marginalized in our community and with the greatest need. We place no stipulations on how they will spend this money because we believe they know best what they need.

Funded by Chicago, IL (July 2020)