Mission, Work, and History
Northside students preparing food bags to be donated
Who we are and what we do
The mission of Urban Habitat Chicago is to demonstrate the viability of sustainable concepts and practices in urban environments through research, education, and hands-on projects.
We work at the intersections of urban agriculture, the built environment, materials recovery and reuse, and emerging local industries, focusing on creating seamless transitions in the cycles of resources at all scales.
Our work today
UHC enables citizens to make direct environmental and social change.
Our new UHC Institute (UHCi) makes these initiatives even more effective.
We provide “hands-on” training in environmental issues and urban agriculture through school programs, and adult workshops, tours and volunteer days at our teaching farm and other sites.
Our organic farm sites provide food to Chicago’s needy through food pantries and hunger organizations, as well as to the families of youth and adult students and volunteers. Many of our past participants have gone on the create their own urban farming projects - or to teach others how to.
We believe in community led design. Our collaborations with Schools and community organizations lead to design and implementation of new sustainable schoolyards, green roofs and “green” architectural elements.
How you can help
We need you in order to help make our region a better environment.
UHC is a 501c3 tax-exempt organization that needs your encouragement and support. All contributions are tax-deductible. To find out how you can help, and to learn more about what we do and why, keep looking around our website and visit us often.
Please help support UHC.
You can also help through volunteering! Please check our current volunteer positions here
The people of UHC are drawn from many professions and interests - landscape architecture, ecology, farming, environmental conservation, architecture, biology, product design, media production, construction, education, and more. UHC is a talented, multidisciplinary team of people that work on a volunteer basis to develop and apply unique solutions to the many challenges presented in cities.
Our partners are essential to our work. They are both recipients and supporters of our mission - We work together directly with them to forward our collective environmental and social goals.
A partial list of active partners includes:
Sunlight of the Spirit / Jack Clark’s Recovering Family
Northside College Preparatory High School
Cooking Matters Chicago
Neighborhood Nutrition Centers
Jamieson Elementary School (JEFF)
Friends of Goethe Elementary School (FOGS)
True Nature Foods
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museums
We also thank local businesses for their tremendous recent support, including:
PICTURES! Our online UHC Photo Album
VIDEO! We also have several videos explaining our work available for viewing here