Forward Chicago is a grassroots, all-volunteer, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that connects neighbors, local businesses and organizations to build a stronger community. We envision our neighborhoods as model communities for people of all ages, where residents can age in place while remaining active, engaged and influential.

Watch the short video below to hear from founding members and participants about what Forward Chicago means to them and why it’s such a dynamic community force.

What We Do

Forward Chicago acts as a hub for existing support services and programs that help people lead healthy, productive lives as they age so they can remain in their neighborhoods. We partner closely with public, government and private entities to connect residents with cultural, social, volunteer and learning opportunities.

We also sponsor activities that bring community members together around common interests and the exploration of ideas, especially around how neighborhoods can support its residents as they age. We advocate for communities that support and celebrate people of all ages.

To keep community members informed, Forward Chicago publishes the following:

  • Website with a regularly updated calendar and blog.
  • Enewsletter, sent twice a month (sign up today!).
  • Print newsletter distributed three times a year

Look for the newsletter on the website and at locations around Lincoln Square including Alderman Ameya Pawar’s office, Café Selmarie, Galter LifeCenter, Julius Meinl Coffee Shop, Old Town School of Folk Music, and St. Matthias Church.

Forward Chicago also supports issues and initiatives that address housing, transportation, social, and financial issues related to aging and community.

Who We Serve

Forward Chicago is committed to responding to and reflecting the richness and diversity of our community. The programs we promote are open to everyone, regardless of age.

Though we launched where we live — in the 47th Ward, which we consider one of the most livable neighborhoods in the heart of the northside of Chicago — we have expanded into other neighborhoods to meet community-driven needs.


We are a volunteer non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, and we rely on support from local businesses/organizations and community members. All donations are fully tax-deductible and are used to support mission-driven programming in the community.

There are no paid officers or employees. Our work is done in the spirit of service to cultivate communities that are better equipped to respond to the needs of older residents and that value the experience of everyone.


Founded in 2012 by a group of Chicago residents interested in remaining active and engaged as we age, Forward Chicago includes community members of all ages from across the north side. Learn more about our history.


While Forward Chicago is endorsed by and works with local and state political leaders, Forward Chicago has no political affiliation. In fact, there’s a funny story about our name …

One Last Important Note

As we can’t investigate every business that has “opportunities” for our members, we choose to have a no-outreach policy and request that businesses and individuals refrain from using their connection to Forward Chicago to recruit, solicit or otherwise attempt to involve Forward Chicago members in for-profit endeavors. Contact us if you have questions about this policy.

New programs and initiatives should be developed in concert with Forward Chicago leadership and members. We welcome proposals at Board Plus meetings held the fourth Tuesday of every month.


Featured Photo: A Chicago neighborhood map designed by Ork Posters, which is located right here in the 47th Ward!
Credit: Andrew Seaman