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Healthcare Union Provides Crucial Donation To Keep Kids Educated During Chicago Teachers Strike

Ofelia Sanchez greets K-1.

Demonstrating its support for the welfare of the city's schoolchildren, one of Illinois' largest labor unions Tuesday provided critical funding for a camp that provides educational opportunities, meals, child care and other important stewardship to kids during the Chicago teachers strike. 

SEIU Healthcare Illinois and Indiana donated $1,000 to the Logan Square Neighborhood Association's (LSNA) Freedom Camp, an educational program available to students from kindergarten through high school during the labor impasse.   In addition to providing food and child care to the children, the camps afford kids an opportunity to learn about the history of thelabor movement and the civic values embodied in the work stoppage. 

"We thank SEIU for its contribution and commitment during the CPS teacher strike," said Maria Tejo, LSNA's Freedom Camp coordinator.  "With SEIU's donation, we will be able to provide breakfast, lunch and materials to the 100 students that participated in our camp that educated them on Civic Engagement and Participation.  It is only due to the Chicago community coming together that we have managed to work towards achieving our mission."

Suheily De Oleo supervises lunch at Freedom Camp.

With more than 91,000 members who provide health care and child care, SEIU Healthcare Illinois and Indiana has stood in solidarity with striking teachers, and its contribution to the camp perpetuates the ultimate goal of the walkout: to promote better educational opportunities for children and communities. 

"Chicago teachers are striking to protect the future of our schoolchildren and our communities, and the Freedom Camp serves the same objectives by giving kids educational opportunities, meals and a chance to spend their day in a productive learning environment while schools are not in session," said SEIU member Maria Macias, a Chicago child care provider.  "We're proud to stand by teachers in this historic fight, and we're proud to help children learn about the vital principles their teachers are defending on the picket line.  Without teachers I wouldn't have the education that I have, and the children I serve wouldn't either."

The Freedom Camp operates from 9 AM to 1 PM at St. Augustine College, 3255 W. Armitage.   Admission is free.  Parents interested in sending their children to Freedom Camp should call (773) 384-4370. 

SOURCE SEIU Healthcare Illinois and Indiana

Keywords: childcare, freedom camp, healthcare, Logan Square, Maria Macias, Maria Trejo, SEIU, St. Augustine College, Strike

Posted in LSNA in the Media