Safe Havens open to CPS students on spring break

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Throughout the city, Safe Havens are open and activities are planned to help keep students safe while they are on spring break. (WLS)

Chicago Public Schools students are on spring break this week. Throughout the city, Safe Havens are open and activities are planned to help keep students safe while they are out of school.

Each Safe Haven site across the city is open from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. this week. Free meals and activities will be offered.

Click here for a list of Safe Haven locations.

A jump rope and a clear sidewalk is a good time for this 6-year-old. She and many of the kids in this Englewood neighborhood stay close to home - very close.

"When we were younger and it was spring break, we would wake up outside. But you can't do that, you can't send your kids outside for fear of something happening to them," said Kim Dunbar.

Dunbar joined Mothers Against Senseless Killings last year. The mother and grandmother will help offer a safe spaces during spring break this week. Their first Moms on Patrol event is in Englewood.

Tamar Manasseh started the group in Englewood and is taking MASK to other areas of the city.

"It's community. It's what so many of us grew up with but somehow got away from," Manasseh said.

Further south in the West Pullman neighborhood, some students on spring break find a safe haven at Maple Park United Methodist Church.

"The whole idea of sanctuary is that we're able to be a sanctuary not just on Sunday morning, but also throughout the week and serve the needs of the community," said Rev. Robert Biekman.

More than keeping the children in a safe environment, the Safe Haven director here will engage the kids in a program to teach financial literacy and perhaps spark an entrepreneurial spirit.

"All my life I wanted to make the lemonade sign and I wanted the ingredients but I didn't have the ingredients," Kaitlyn Douglas said.

"I think it will be an amazing lemonade stand because we both work together on everything," Jalen Smith said.

The kids came up with an idea to create a lemonade stand and their director encouraged their enthusiasm and curiosity.

"I give the children a lot of empowerment. I try to empower them to stand up, to know that they have value," said Carla Williams, Safe Haven director at Maple Park United Methodist.
Related Topics:
educationlabor unionsunion contractchicago teachers unionteachersstrikechicago public schoolsChicago - Englewood
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