KidsMatter is a prevention-based organization focusing on the overall health and development of Kids… from their Social, Emotional, and Academic well-being. We predominantly work with school districts 203 & 204 and the faith base community in the Western Suburbs of Chicago. Our mission is building resilient kids who say NO to destructive choices and YES to endless possibilities.
The organization’s goals focus on prevention and include tackling at-risk issues threatening the lives of youth before they start. Now marking its 19th year, KidsMatter provides asset education and asset-building events, as well as a variety of interactive growth opportunities, including programs and workshops, to youth and families throughout much of DuPage & Will Counties – directly and indirectly touching thousands of lives.
Annually we serve more than 45,000 youth, with more than 250,000 youth and families attending KidsMatters events and programs, and we donate back to the community more than 4,300 community service hours with 470 volunteers.
All KidsMatter programs and events are based off the Search Institute 40 Developmental Assets all kids need to be successful in life.
KidsMatter Programs & Events
KidsMatter hosts an annual Fair that welcomes more than 400 area students and connects youth and families to a wide variety of volunteer service opportunities from 40 nonprofits in the area.
Youth Service Awards
Community leaders nominate youth in the area who demonstrate a passion for providing service to both their community and world. Of the nominees, 25 youth are awarded a Youth Service Award by KidsMatter, and are then honored by the City of Naperville Mayor and Council in an awards ceremony.
Digital Leadership Summit
KidsMatter—in partnership with school districts 203 and 204—developed a program to empower students to realize their leadership potential, combat cyberbullying and create a positive digital footprint. Over 400 students in grades fourth through eighth participate from 47 schools.
Kick-off to Summer
Partnering with the Naperville Park District and their annual Frontier Kite Fly Festival, KidsMatter hosted 4,000 individuals and families for a full day of summer fun, mental wellness, skateboarding demos and a competitive obstacle race including the Naperville Police and Fire Departments.
KidsMatter hosts an annual Fair that welcomes nearly 1,000 area students to explore job and career opportunities from 50+ area companies and organizations hiring in our area. The Fair prepares youth for the workforce by providing them with the tools they need to be successful in their job search—as well as connects them with employment opportunities.
State of the Kids
KidsMatter conducted a “Stress Matters Survey” for 4,800 students in districts 203 and 204 to benefit youth and their families. As an outcome of the survey, the Crisis Text Line launched in September of 2018.The Line averages 396 calls from 183 students monthly and has produced seven active saves since its launch.
Kids & Parents Educational Forums
KidsMatter holds four to six educational forums on topics that are relevant in our community. This year’s topics include Mental Health & Suicide Prevention, Gender & Sexuality, Digital Awareness, Resilience Skills & Stress Management, Substance Abuse and Addiction.
Collaborative Youth Team of Illinois
Leading the coalition of 35 youth-serving non-profit agencies in DuPage and Will Counties, KidsMatter works with these organizations to promote and advocate for the health and well-being of kids and families.
KidsMatter—in partnership with school districts 203 and 204—developed a College and Career Readiness authentic workplace learning program for high school Juniors and Seniors to expose them to different career paths. The goal of the work base learning program is to build towards college and career success through aligned education, training and employment opportunities.
Our vision is Empowering All Kids to realize their purpose, know their value and help them find their pathway. Simply put, we want Kids to be Successful in Life, because KidsMatter!
More from Spotlight
Watch more interviews with local nonprofit organizations serving the Naperville area.
Kamala Martinez, CEO, Executive Director
Sherilyn Hebel, Director of Programs