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Emerson Collective

Arne Duncan on Tackling Violence in Chicago with Emerson Collective

When Arne Duncan—now a managing partner at Emerson Collective—returned to Chicago after serving as US Secretary of Education, one of his first calls, he says, was to BCG senior partner and managing director Marin Gjaja, inviting BCG to collaborate on combating gun violence in the city.

The city of Chicago faced an epidemic of gun violence among young people, resulting in a dramatic increase in homicides. Emerson Collective turned to BCG to help develop a holistic model for making the city’s neighborhoods safer.

Emerson Collective

BCG Solution

Working closely with the leadership of Emerson Collective, BCG designed a comprehensive model for working with young men to give them an alternative to drugs, crime, and violence. The model is designed to bring young men into the broader economy and provide career opportunities. The program includes job training, parental coaching, and social development guidance.

Impact

In just six months, a pilot program was established in one of Chicago’s hardest-hit neighborhoods. The program enrolled 32 young men, and nearly all have graduated to transitional employment and are now building sustainable careers.

About Emerson Collective

Emerson Collective is dedicated to making a difference in education, immigration reform, the environment, and other social-justice initiatives. The organization partners with entrepreneurs and experts, parents and policymakers, advocates, and administrators to spur change and promote equality. Working closely with Emerson Collective, BCG has designed a comprehensive program to give young men an alternative to drugs, crime, and violence.

Center for Illinois' Future
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