A nurturing hub within the heart of Chinatown, the Chinese American Service League (CASL)connects families and individuals of all ages with the vital support they need to flourish physically, economically, mentally and socially, enabling them to thrive and contribute to the greater Chicago community.
In 1978, 10 dedicated Chinese Americans came together to bridge the gap in services for Chinese American immigrants in Chicago. Their passion and commitment ignited the spark for the Chinese American Service League.
Today CASL is the largest, most comprehensive social service agency in the Midwest dedicated to serving the needs of Chinese Americans. At CASL, we welcome all who walk through our doors, providing child services, elder services, employment training services, family counseling, and housing and financial education services to some 17,000 clients of all ages and backgrounds each year.
Our Services to the Community
Child Education and Development Services (CEDS) - helps children learn in an enriching bilingual/bicultural environment through a variety of developmentally appropriate programs:
- Child Development Center (CDC) – a full day, bilingual/bicultural preschool, accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), serving low to moderate income families with children ages 2 to 5 years old.
- The Family Learning and Resource Center (FALREC) – an early childhood intervention and family support program serving nearly 200 young Chinese families with children up to 5 years of age through educational activities, home visits parenting workshops, and case management.
- The School Center (SAC) – after school and full-day programming for children ages 6 to 12, focusing on social, educational, cultural, and recreational activities; it also supports parent involvement and training.
Elderly Services Department – committed to making sure our elders remain independent, healthy, happy, and active as they age in place in their community:
- Adult Day Service (ADS) – daily on-site care for frail elderly in a supervised and structured group setting.
- In-Home Service (IHS) – prevents premature nursing home placements by providing holistic home care to frail homebound seniors.
- Citizenship and Immigration Services – assists individuals of all ages through the processes of naturalization and family reunification, through application assistance, different levels of ESL and citizenship classes, and one-on-one mock interviews. The program also encourages new citizens to register to vote.
- Title V Employment Program – places Asian seniors in various social service agencies across the Chicago area for on-the-job-training and unsubsidized job placement.
- Pine Tree Senior Council – consisting of over 400 members of the Chinese senior community, a strong social networking, lifelong learning, and advocacy group that enriches the lives of seniors through a variety of activities including dancing calligraphy, Tai Chi, birthday celebrations and group excursions.
Employment and Training Department – provides members of the community with skills and knowledge they need to find a successful job, and helps teens stay in school and move on to post-secondary education:
- Community Employment Program – helps individuals find meaningful employment through, interview techniques, resume writing, employment counseling, job placement and retention follow-up.
- Chef Training Program – a 16 week course that trains students in continental cuisine and places graduates at Chicago's fine restaurants, hotels and catering services.
- Adult Employment Program – assists Chicago residents 18 and over to develop pre-employment skills through counseling, job coaching, training, job placement, and follow-up services.
- High School Program – provides services for youth ages 16-21 who struggle with barriers such as language, academic, and social difficulties. Services include homework tutoring, ACT classes, occupational, leadership and volunteerism training. Mentoring, counseling, and support services are also provided.
Family and Community Services (FCS) – reaches all aspects of a family's life, assisting clients to remain healthy, integrated, and connected to their cultural roots. Services include:
- Youth Development Program – strives to enhance the social and educational development of Chinese youth.
- Community Health Outreach Program – seeks to improve the health status of recent immigrants through extensive outreach efforts, educational workshops, and the provision of health care information through a bilingual health library.
- Counseling, Casework, Information, and Referral Services.