Infant Welfare Society
Client: Infant Welfare Society
The Infant Welfare Society’s first patients were immigrants coming to the new world in 1911. Our first caregivers wore petticoats and shawls. These women worked out of storefronts in poor neighborhoods to offer clean, safe milk, and education to mothers and babies.
Our patients today are immigrants as well, but our caregivers wear lab coats and have professional degrees. No one has to line up at a storefront to receive care anymore.
Over the last 95 years, the Infant Welfare Society has grown into a Chicago institution, providing an extensive array of medical care to 8,000 women and children last year alone. We are here for the neediest in our community (most of our patients live below poverty level and are uninsured) but we care for every woman and child who walks through our doors. We remain steadfastly independent. We accept public aid and private insurance, and offer a sliding scale to patients with no health coverage at all. The rest of what we need we raise through private donations.
We offer comprehensive health care services
A pregnant woman who walks into our new facility in West Logan Square will be greeted in Spanish, Polish or English. On an average day, she will receive our services and be on her way within an hour. If she has other children, they will play in the area designed just for them, within easy sight of their mother.
She will get prenatal, family planning and gynecological care. She will be able to attend family support groups and get parenting advice. Her baby will receive every manner of well-baby and pediatric health care, even dental care, until adulthood. Her growing child will receive lead screening, vision tests, school physicals and more. She and her family will be eligible for depression screening, teen counseling and other mental health support if they ever need it. This woman, who may not have learned English, or ever left the neighborhood once she arrived, may have found the one place her family will ever need for medical care.
We want to do more
Our patients’ needs are growing, and we are growing to meet those needs. Last year, after a $3.5 million renovation, the Society moved from North Halsted Street and opened its doors in West Logan Square, in the center of a major Latino community and within easy reach of a substantial Polish community.
Under the direction of Dr. John Wilhelm, an obstetrician and former public health commissioner for the City of Chicago, the Infant Welfare Society is drawing an average of 100 more patients each month. The facility is more patient friendly. Wait times are shorter. Reminder calls to patients have brought appointment no-shows down to a miraculous 12 percent. The Society has already partnered with local hospitals and a local school and hopes to expand hours of operation in the next year to be more convenient for the neighborhood’s working people.
The Women’s Auxiliary
One of the Society’s greatest strengths is its non-profit auxiliary. Well-grounded in those early days giving out milk and weighing babies, the auxiliary’s membership of more than 1,300 is a financial umbilical cord for the Society. More than 45 fundraising events every year combined with sales from its onsite resale shop allow the auxiliary to supply 20 percent of the Society’s annual budget. These are dedicated women from all walks of life who strongly believe in the work of the Society.
What it takes to raise healthy children
Your gift to the Infant Welfare Society will have a direct effect on the programs and services we provide to some of Chicago’s neediest women and children.
A gift of…
- $50 provides asthma medication for a child for a year.
- $100 provides mammogram screening for one woman.
- $250 provides dental care for a child for a year.
- $500 provides a child over the age of one with well child care and immunizations.
- $1,000 provides well baby care and immunizations for an infant and well woman care for the mother for a year.
- $2,500 provides prenatal care for an expecting mother.
How to help
Your donation by check, cash or credit card is welcomed any time, but there may be more you can do for the women and infants who need your support. Please consider gifts of stock, matching gifts, honorariums or memorials, bequests, planned gifts, in-kind gifts and sponsorship or participation in special events. Your time is also a great gift, and our auxiliary and medical facility offer volunteer opportunities throughout the year.
Contact _________, Director of Development, ___________ or email him at email@example.com to discuss the possibilities.