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Happy Holidays From

the Instituto Familia!


Instituto del Progreso Latino Celebrated as a 2023 Bank of America Chicago Neighborhood Builders

Instituto del Progreso Latino & the North Lawndale Employment Network were celebrated as the 2023 Chicago Neighborhood Builders. In addition to $200,000 in grant funding, each organization will receive comprehensive leadership training for the executive director and an emerging leader while engaging with a network of peer organizations that enhances their ability to access capital and expand impact.

Over the past 20 years the Chicago Neighborhood Builders and Bank of America have worked with over 1,600 nonprofits and invested over $300 million in our communities. It is an honor to be able to work with all of these wonderful organizations to serve our communities and bring services to those who may need them. Let’s continue building together!

For more information read Chicago Block Club's article by clicking here.

Instituto del Progreso Latino Honored with HLAI Community Service Award

President & CEO Karina Ayala-Bermejo, former President of the Hispanic Lawyers of Illinois (HLAI - Serving the Hispanic Lawyers of Illinois), proudly joined an amazing gathering of Latino and Latina lawyers, law students and judges who gathered at Theater on the Lake for the HLAI Annual Gala. Karina Ayala-Bermejo accepted the HLAI Community Service Award on behalf of the work of Instituto del Progreso Latino.

Congratulations to Dora Cornelio, for being sworn in as the new President of HLAI and to Jennifer Crespo for serving as the immediate past president. Lastly, congratulations to Andrea Belard, Miguel Ruiz & Martín Montes for their awards!

Chicago White Sox Team-Up with Project AMOR

In partnership with the Chicago White Sox, Instituto celebrated the season of giving and warmth, providing a special holiday experience for a number of families recently-arrived to Chicago. The White Sox welcomed these families to the ballpark and provided them with winter coats and other winter clothing items. This night included pictures with Sox mascot South Paw, Lotería, Sox-themed photo opportunities, face painting, and a big holiday dinner!

Chicago White Sox Charities also presented Instituto with a $10,000 grant supporting Project AMOR! Each year, the White Sox provide financial, in-kind and emotional support to hundreds of Chicago-based organizations, especially those leading the fight against cancer, dedicated to improving the lives of youth through education, health, wellness and those offering support to children and families in crisis.

Thank you to the Chicago White Sox Charities for their generosity and continued partnership!

Interested in donating to Project AMOR? Please click HERE.

2023 Toy Drive

We are thrilled to share that Instituto’s annual Toy Drive was an immense success!

A heartfelt thank you extends to our presenting sponsors Target, Fluid Management, and our supporting partners Fifth Third Bank, Little Village Chamber of Commerce, JP Morgan Chase, Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, Kehoe Designs, University of Illinois Chicago, Proxima, and ICHOR . Your generous support played a pivotal role in making this event truly extraordinary.

A special appreciation goes out to all the dedicated volunteers and community members who selflessly contributed their time and donated toys. Your efforts helped create a magical and heartwarming experience for so many.

Wishing you all the warmth and happiness of the season. Happy Holidays!

Genentech Donates Warm Clothes to Project AMOR

A big thanks to Genentech for their Warm Clothes Give Back event with Instituto. President & CEO Karina Ayala-Bermejo shared Instituto’s impact and recent efforts with Project AMOR (Asylum, Migrant, Outreach Response) which mobilized donations and support. Special thanks to CEO Colleen Dodson, Dale Polonus, Evelyn Hernandez, Lisa Gray and the entire Genentech family for their generosity.


Instituto President & CEO Karina Ayala-Bermejo Visits the City Council

Instituto President & CEO Karina Ayala-Bermejo presented on Immigration and Language Access at the 2023 RAICES Public Policy Conference. Nearly 600 attended including Instituto’s team, community members, students, small business owners, and academic institutions all helping shape the RAICES public policy platform.

Shields Middle School Knitting Club Contributes to Project AMOR

Shields Middle School Knitting Club members made hats for our new arrivals. Special thanks to Cynthia Castro for coordinating donations for our Project AMOR.

November Turkey Treat Drive

In the radiant spirit of giving, November's Turkey Treat Wednesday Free Food Pantry in Pilsen was a shining success. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Supermercados El Güero, and the Hispanic Federation for generously sponsoring the turkeys, adding warmth and nourishment to our community.


A profound thank you to our dedicated volunteers from Northern Trust Careers and Beam Suntory. Your selfless contributions played a pivotal role in ensuring the success of this event, and we are truly grateful for your commitment to serving our community.


A special acknowledgment goes to the Hispanic Federation for their invaluable support, providing $6,000 in gift cards. Your generosity not only fuels events like these but also inspires hope and unity within our community.


Thank you to Supermercados El Güero, Hispanic Federation, Northern Trust Careers, Beam Suntory, and all our volunteers, for coming together and making a meaningful difference in the lives of those we serve. Your collective efforts brightened the days of 418 families and over 1,254 individuals, embodying the true spirit of community and compassion.

Congratulations to our 2023 Basic Nursing Assistant Graduates

Instituto College celebrated the graduation of the 22nd class of Basic Nursing Assistant (BNA) students! It was a very special evening in which the excitement of the room was incredibly heartfelt. We are extremely proud of our graduates who have shown great resilience and dedication. Since 2016, 450 students have enrolled in Instituto’s BNA Training Program and a significant majority have become Certified Nursing Assistants serving the community!


In September of 2022, Instituto responded to the influx of new migrant arrivals to Chicago by launching Project AMOR (Asylum Migrant Outreach Response). In conjunction with the City of Chicago, Instituto created an Amazon Wishlist to mobilize donation efforts for this new population. Since the launch of the Wishlist, over $410,000 in essential items such as clothes, toiletries, diapers, and hygiene products, have been purchased by generous donors to help aid migrants. Instituto has also directly assisted over 3,500 asylum seekers by helping them obtain essential items as well as providing them with legal aid and financial literacy direction.


With a surge of new arrivals that began in May of this year, Instituto del Progreso Latino began accepting physical donations of new and unused clothes and other essential items to its buildings. Additionally, over 600 volunteers have signed up to volunteer and assist with Instituto's Project AMOR efforts. 

Your generous, tax-deductible gift will directly support Instituto's efforts to assist the recent influx of migrants to Chicago.

Click Here to Learn More or Donate!
Volunteer Registration

Interested in Joining Instituto?

Instituto is now hiring for a variety of different positions! To find out more information or begin applying, visit the website below.

Start your career with us, and join our family today!

Enrollment is Open for Our Instituto Justice & Leadership Academy

Our Instituto Justice Leadership Academy accepts students on a rolling basis! Click on the button below to learn more about IJLA; our options high school may be the perfect fit for you or someone you know.

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Enroll at Instituto Health Sciences Career Academy Today!

Instituto Health Science Career Academy (IHSCA) is family ("Somos Familia"), an open door, a place of rigor and academia where students earn a diploma that matters.

IHSCA scholars guide and facilitate others to make a positive difference in their own lives and to contribute to a larger good. By focusing on what we believe and value, and then positively build on this understand, our impact is limitless.

We are currently accepting students for 9th-12th grade.

If you are interested in enrolling at IHSCA please contact the school or email

Erica Marin at [email protected] 

or visit our website below:

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Click on the Logos Below to Learn More About our Schools!

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