The Mayor's Office of Community Safety, Alderman Lamont J. Robinson and Mortenson Launch "Words of Love" Community Safety Initiative in Chicago
Words of Love Chicago

Press Release - Lamont J. Robinson Alderman, 4th Ward - Chicago

Alderman Lamont J. Robinson, in collaboration with the Mayor’s Office of Community Safety and Mortenson, is proud to have launched the "Words of Love" initiative during Mental Health Awareness Month. This community safety initiative aims to promote positivity through creative, community-focused initiatives funded by an initial public-private partnership with Mortenson. The "Words of Love" initiative involves placing motivational and positive signs on vacant lots in economically disinvested communities to beautify these spaces and attract further investment.

On May 18, 2024, at 10:00 AM, a community event was held at 4421 S. Cottage Grove Avenue to launch the effort. This event included a reptile show, food, a coffee bar, construction career learning opportunities, interactive play, "Touch a Truck," and coloring stations.

“I am excited to kick off the 'Words of Love' initiative in the 4th ward during Mental Health Awareness Month," said Alderman Lamont J. Robinson. “This project not only highlights the importance of mental health but also brings our community together with messages of positivity and introduces youth to careers in construction. This is also a great addition to the request for proposal, Funding a Network of Community Conveners for Neighborhood Safety.” Sheryl Van Anne, Vice President & General Manager of Mortenson says, “Mortenson is excited to partner with Alderman Robinson and the Mayor’s office with this exciting initiative. We appreciate the opportunity to build upon and promote positivity throughout our community”.

On Friday, May 3rd, 2024, Mayor Brandon Johnson, along with the Chicago Department of Public Health and the Mayor’s Office of Community Safety, introduced a Request for Proposals (RFP) to fund a network of community conveners for neighborhood safety as part of The People’s Plan for Community Safety. This RFP includes $1 million in funding, with up to $250,000 allocated to community-based organizations in four priority areas: Austin, Englewood, South Lawndale/Little Village, and West Garfield Park. “Directing resources into disinvested communities is a key component of addressing the root causes of violence. The partnership between Alderman Robinson and Mortenson is critical in this effort. Together, we are expanding community safety through revitalization and targeted community investments,” said Deputy Mayor of Community Safety Garien Gatewood.

Chicago office Vice President & General Manager, Sheryl Van Anne, and Deputy Mayor Gatewood also appeared on WGN in Chicago to promote the initiative.