Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and First Lady Amy Eshleman today announced the launch of the My CHI. My Future. (MCMF) mobile app, a significant investment and resource designed to help teens easily find out-of-school programs, events, resources, jobs, and more. This is the first app of its kind nationwide created by a city government. The My CHI. My Future. app is available now on the iOS App Store and Google Play Store.
The My CHI. My Future. app is the latest project of Mayor Lightfoot and First Lady Eshleman’s initiative, “My CHI. My Future.” — a multi-year, youth-focused initiative designed to connect youth across Chicago to meaningful out-of-school experiences. The My CHI. My Future. family of more than 250 organizations has been designing the initiative with a focus on organizing and connecting the opportunity ecosystem in Chicago. Supported by the Department of Family and Support Services, the initiative has worked with thousands of caring adults from public, private, and civic institutions all over the city to ensure that every young person has a plan for out-of-school engagement.
“I have been very pleased with the work that the My CHI. My Future. program has accomplished over these past two years,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “Therefore, on the second anniversary of the program, I am excited to announce the launch of the My. CHI. My. Future. app that will connect teenagers across the city with out-of-school enrichment activities. This app will not only increase community engagement with this program, but ensure our city’s young people are engaging in a safe, nurturing environment.”
The app will give Chicago teens access to the following resources this summer:
- Summer jobs, including One Summer Chicago and Chicago Youth Service Corps
- Seasonal programs from Parks and Libraries
- Local Summer Kickback events planned by hundreds of teens across 15 neighborhoods
- Community-based programs from over 250 partners
The My CHI. My Future. app has been years in the making as a result between City department leadership and youth organizations.
“I am so proud that the new My CHI. My Future. app is developed with input from Chicago youth to support them as they pursue their passions in our city. Thank you to the caring adults from community organizations, philanthropy, corporations, and City departments who made today’s launch possible,” said First Lady Amy Eshleman.
“DFSS is committed to helping young people have enriching experiences that help them learn, grow and thrive,” said DFSS Commissioner Brandie Knazze. “The new My Chi. My Future. app allows our youth to find opportunities that align with their interests and needs all through the click of a few buttons on their phone. Whether a young person is interested in civic leadership opportunities, an after-school club, or just a way to kick back — this new app allows young people to connect and share programs easily.”
The My CHI. My Future. app provides a custom experience for the teen user, who can choose to share information such as age, interests, and location. The app then creates a custom homepage for its user, listing relevant youth opportunities.
The My CHI. My Future. app is made possible with funding from the City of Chicago and Bank of America, and PNC through the One Chicago Fund.
“The My CHI. My Future. mobile app is an important public-private collaboration with Chicago’s philanthropic and corporate communities in support of the MCMF mission to empower youth to explore their individual passions,” said Sarah Pang, president, One Chicago Fund.
To develop the app, My CHI. My Future. partnered with EX3 Labs — a local experience design, digital innovation, mobile app development firm, located in Chicago, led by Adam Wisniewski — to build the app. Teens were also a crucial part in the planning and development of the My CHI. My Future. app, as they were consulted and provided critical feedback in the brainstorming and design phases to create a mobile-friendly experience.
“EX3 Labs is extremely honored to work with the City of Chicago to design, develop, and launch the My CHI. My Future. mobile application,” said Adam Wisniewski, EX3 Labs CEO and Founder. “As someone who learned how to code through public libraries and local programs, I understand the importance of connecting youth with opportunities that enable exploration, learning, and that can potentially shape career paths.”
In addition to the custom homepage, teens can also use the app to easily filter through the many opportunities on the platform, which are updated daily. The app compiles programming from over 250 and counting community and citywide youth organizations and City departments. These stakeholders have been engaged through the work of My CHI. My Future. dating back to its launch in May 2020, including through citywide and community meetings, seasonal campaigns, and events.
Besides finding summer jobs and opportunities, teens who download the My CHI. My Future. app will be eligible to enter a weekly drawing to win free Lollapalooza tickets beginning May 23 and ending July 3. This exclusive drawing will occur on a weekly basis.
“As part of our continued goal to introduce Chicago’s young creative minds to the opportunities available to them, we are pleased to offer Lollapalooza tickets as an incentive for youths to download and utilize the My CHI. My Future. app,” said Charlie Walker, Partner at C3 Presents and Lollapalooza promoter. “The app is a valuable resource for teens and families to access important programs, events and unique opportunities, including programs we are already working on with youth-serving organizations, such as After School Matters and Ingenuity.”
My CHI. My Future. is a key piece of Mayor Lightfoot’s strategy to ensure Chicago’s youth are safe and engaged during out-of-school time. Using the My CHI. My Future. app, Chicago youth can access thousands of opportunities that will allow them to shape their futures and create a brighter future for the city and beyond.