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Consider a Financial Gift

The Cara Program relies on the generosity of concerned individuals to continue empowering individuals affected by homelessness and poverty to achieve real and lasting success. We would greatly appreciate any consideration you can give in support of our mission. 

  • Click HERE to make a secure donation online by credit card
  • Donations can also be mailed to:

The Cara Program
Development Office
237 S. Desplaines
Chicago, IL 60661

  • Here are just a few ways your donation will impact our students:

$10 can provide hope for students and will motivate them knowing one more person is joining their community of Support.

$20 can provide opportunity for a jobseeker affected by poverty.

$30 can provide a student's public transportation for one week.

$40 can provide one full day of training for a student

$50 can provide a Cara student with an interview-ready suit.

$115 can provide a student's public transportation for one month.

$225 can provide a one-on-one, post-placement coaching session and retention support services for  a student on the job.

$150 can provide a Cara student with a vision or dental check-up.

$500 can provide a matched savings for one employed Cara mom for five months.

  • Click here for a few examples that illustrate the type of impact each gift can have.
  • To schedule recurring donations, please see our Sustaining Member Program below.
  • Please click here to read our Donor Privacy Policy and Donor's Bill of Rights.

Sustaining Member Program

Please consider joining our Sustaining Member Program with a recurring donation.  By participating, you can spread your charitable giving throughout the year and help The Cara Program allocate our resources to best meet our students' needs.  Please click here to read more information about this program.  Or to sign up, please visit our donation page and choose to make a quarterly, monthly, or annual gift to The Cara Program.

Matching Gifts Program

You may be able to double or even triple your gift to The Cara Program through your employer’s matching gifts program. Please check this partial list of companies that have matching gifts program or contact your personnel office to see if you can take advantage of such an opportunity. Your company's program may not be included on this list, so if you don't see your company, please reach out to your benefits or human resources contact to inquire. 

Remembering The Cara Program in Your Estate or Individual Retirement Account

The Cara Program would be honored to accept gifts from your will, life insurance policy, or retirement plans. If you would like to remember The Cara Program by making a gift of a specific dollar amount or percentage of your total estate, simply state this in your will. Example: “I give to The Cara Program, an Illinois not-for-profit organization located in Chicago, (sum or percentage of residual estate) to be spent for its general purposes.”

To leave a donation through your life insurance policy or retirement plans, please contact the administrator of those funds and ask for a change of beneficiary form. Of course, please first check with your financial or legal advisor to see what is best for you before making a bequest.

If you are planning to leave such a gift, we would be grateful to know of your choice so that we may take the opportunity to more closely share with you our program’s growth over the years. If this is of interest to you, or if would like more information, please contact Sarah Mansberger, Director of Development and Communications, at (312) 798-3303.

Clean Out Your Closet

To donate professional  clothing, please bring your donations to our office at 237 S. Desplaines, Chicago, IL 60661.  We can accept clothing donations, Monday - Friday, between 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  Please contact Lisa Peters at (312) 798-3340 if you have any questions.

Our most needed items are gently used, clean, interview-ready business attire, including:

  • Suits (accepted colors: black, grey, brown, dark/ navy blue)
  • Blazers or Jackets
  • Dress Shirts/ Blouses
  • Dress Pants
  • Skirts
  • Shoes
  • Socks or Hosiery (new only please!)

Leveraging Community Resources

The Cara Program is proud to partner with Investing in Communities (IIC).  By empowering individuals and businesses to become philanthropists, IIC inspires the public to actively learn about and engage with nonprofits.  Currently, IIC leverages resources from real estate transactions to generate unrestricted funding for nonprofit organizations making a difference in their communities.  For more information, please visit

The Impact

The Cara Program is a 4-Star Charity

Charity Navigator has awarded The Cara Program its most coveted 4-star rating!

learn more

Our Partner Programs

  • Clean Slate
  • TCP Staffing

Our Supporters and Employers

  • Accenture
  • Engineered Glass Products
  • Armitage Baptist Church
  • Calumet Area Industrial Commission
  • Ravenswood Community Council
  • Skilken
  • Six Corners Association
  • River North Businesses
  • Various Private Groupon Customers
  • John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County
  • Illinois Medical District Guest House
  • Little Village Chamber of Commerce
  • Illinois Medical District
  • The Habitat Company
  • Union League Club
  • Scrub Inc.
  • Oce Business Services, Inc.
  • Charter One Bank
  • Standard Bank
  • Palmer House Hilton
  • Hilton Chicago O'Hare
  • Loretto Hospital
  • Gate Gourmet
  • Vacant Property Security
  • Sodexo @ Northwestern
  • Resurrection Healthcare
  • Greyhound
  • Hyatt Regency Chicago
  • Hyatt Regency O'Hare
  • Hyatt Regency McCormick
  • Standard Parking
  • JP Morgan Chase
  • Securitas
  • Northwestern Memorial Hospital
  • Pierce and Associates
  • Manpower
  • Mercy Housing Lakefront
  • Pitney Bowes
  • Terrace Paper Company
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois
  • Cambridge Commercial Cleaning
  • Center For Working Families
  • Chicago Bulls
  • Chicago Transit Authority
  • Cleanslate
  • Digby's Security
  • Dyson, Inc.
  • ABM Janitorial Services
  • ACORN Housing
  • Allied Barton Security Services
  • Bank of America
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