The goal for the 2017 Polar Peace March was not only met but exceeded by more than $13,000! As of today, the pledge total is more than $43,600. We are ecstatic that so many UCAN staff and supporters turned out on January 15 to raise funds and let the Chicago know that they wanted to be a part of the solution to decrease violence in our neighborhoods.
More than 300 children, teens and adults made their way through the 1.5-mile route through Lincoln Parking chanting, “Stop the violence. Share the love.” amid drums and tambourines heard along the route. Marchers from across Chicago and the suburbs were greeted in the street by curious shoppers and residents who applauded and snapped photos. Vibrancy and hope radiated throughout the crowd.
“The weather was so perfect. What fun to see spectators along the route, honking their car horns and coming out on to their porches and balconies cheering us on,” noted Jan Bail, event coordinator and founder of the Polar Peace March. The third annual march was a spirited collaboration between UCAN and St. Pauls United Church of Christ whose share a nearly 150-year-old commitment to youth.
Before the march, a brief program celebrated the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the significance of holding the event on his birthday. “I loved the celebration of Dr. King. His words always inspire me and affirm the importance getting involved with the Peace March,” Jan stated.
A youth from UCAN and St. Pauls’ Senior Pastor Matt Fitzgerald spoke encouraging words to fire up the participants. Upon returning from the march, participants enjoyed soup, a performance from a local youth choir and a raffle that included a $500 Target gift card and tickets to the Chicago Bulls, Blackhawks and the 2016 World Series Champions Chicago Cubs.
If you were unable to attend the Polar Peace March but want to contribute, please follow the link to make your donation.
Please visit our photo gallery for photos from the event.