SOS Children’s Villages Illinois is excited to announce the unveiling of “All Roads Lead to Home” as featured on the Wintrust Mural Building. This Mural, located at 1735 N. Ashland Avenue, Chicago, will be viewable from the Kennedy Expressway—one of the busiest roads in the state. SOS Illinois looks forward to welcoming our community members into our evolving journey as we gear up for Child Abuse Prevention Month and Foster Care Awareness Month.
About the Wintrust Mural
The Wintrust Mural, a three-sided building viewable from the Kennedy Expressway owned at operated by Wintrust Financial, stands as voice for nonprofits across the Chicagoland area. The mural, attracting thousands of city-bound commuters each day, sheds light on the missions of some of Illinois most reputable, dedicated, and impact-driven nonprofits committed to making a difference, building experiences, and strengthening our city.
SOS Illinois is honored to have been chosen to be featured on the mural from mid-March through mid-April 2020, creating the perfect introduction to SOS Illinois’ major awareness months: Child Abuse Prevention Month (April) and Foster Care Awareness Month (May).
About “All Roads Lead to Home”
The inspiration for SOS Illinois’ “All Roads Lead to Home” is based on a shared story that for many begins with young, vulnerable lives that have endured abuse or abandonment. The “All Roads Lead Home” mural focuses on bringing much needed awareness to the nearly 500,000 children in foster care in the U.S.
This mural looks to highlight SOS Illinois’ Village model of care, which is an innovative approach to traditional foster care. This model keeps brothers and sisters together in the care of a full-time, professional Foster Parent, living as a family in a single-family home and surrounded with an intentional community of support that includes onsite case management, therapeutic, academic, and recreational services. The Village lays the foundation for rebuilding trust, confidence, and hope for each child in our care. We do this so that children can go on to lead fulfilling lives as adults.
In addition to providing safe, stable, loving homes, we marshal all the resources needed to help children heal and achieve their permanency goals. Whether brothers and sisters are living on our Villages, or moving to their “forever homes,” SOS Illinois is there for every milestone.
Impact of the SOS Illinois Wintrust Mural
Whether zooming passed the Mural in a hurry or stuck in traffic with time to explore its detail, SOS Illinois is grateful for this opportunity for the mural to serve as a new type of “front door” to our organization over the next month.
It is our hope that viewers take away from the mural that there are organizations dedicated to building the future of foster care. As media stories so often focus on the heartbreak and missteps of the foster care system, and as policies are written to protect the most vulnerable lives, we are seeking for this mural to invite viewers into our evolving story; one of hope, persistence, and safety.
With this mural, SOS Illinois aims to show that regardless of the road that is traveled, we will continue to advocate for and support children and families in pursuit of a forever home. For us, we want viewers to recognize that “all roads lead to home” is not a catchphrase, but a promise that we have been keeping for thirty years.
Wintrust’s Longstanding Partnership with SOS Illinois
SOS Children’s Villages Illinois is fortunate to have the long-time partnership of Wintrust, which began during the construction of the 14-homes of the third Village in Chicago’s Roosevelt Square neighborhood more than five years ago. In the years following, Wintrust has offered support at every level of the organization, especially as it relates to spreading awareness of SOS Illinois’ programs and services.
Edward J. Wehmer, Founder/President/CEO of Wintrust Financial Corporation, said, “SOS (Illinois) is a light under a bushel basket. My personal philosophy is you have to give kids a leg up. If you can give someone a leg up, you can change a just one life . . . you can’t get a better feeling than that.”
By supporting SOS Illinois, Wintrust has embodied the notion of giving a “leg up” by making a profound impact on the lives of children in Illinois foster care. With this help, we are strengthening families, stabilizing communities, and building the future of foster care.
Thank you, Wintrust, for once again supporting our children and families with this special feature on the mural!
Inspired by the Mural? Here is How You Can Help
Feeling impacted by the joyous art on the “All Roads Lead to Home” Wintrust mural and wanting to do more? You can help support the children and families we serve by getting involved inside and outside of our Villages and sites.
Throughout the next two months, we will be participating in Child Abuse Prevention Month and raising awareness during Foster Care Awareness Month with various Village events and activities. You can get involved by making a donation in honor of these awareness months, learning about becoming a Foster Parent or Child Welfare Specialist, or getting your copy of our 2020 Influencer Tool Kit that includes ten different opportunities to get involved in spreading awareness of our mission. For information on becoming an Influencer, contact Tina Cisarik at firstname.lastname@example.org.