NCCP connects with a wide range of companies and organizations in the community to support students, families and schools. One company that has made a major impact on schools in North Chicago is AbbVie, an $18 billion global pharmaceutical company that spun off from Abbott Laboratories in 2013.

Building strong communities and effective educational programs are priorities for the company, says Kimberly Taylor-Smith, Director of Employee and Community Engagement at AbbVie.

“NCCP is constantly working with our team at AbbVie to create meaningful volunteer opportunities that help make a difference in the community,” says Taylor-Smith. “There’s no shortage of wonderful ways to leverage our employees and expertise.”

One way AbbVie contributes to the community and partners with NCCP is through its annual “Week of Possibilities.” AbbVie is committed to serving and supporting local communities every day; however, one week each year is now set aside for volunteerism around the globe. With education transformation in their headquarter communities being one of AbbVie’s philanthropic pillars, the schools of North Chicago have benefited greatly from the time, talent and treasure shared during this extraordinary week of service. For example, since 2014, every North Chicago school library has been transformed and the shelves have been filled with thousands of engaging new books. AbbVie volunteers also created an early childhood center for 280 children and, in 2016, the high school’s Learning Resource Center, which houses the college and career counseling center, technology classes and a parent education room, also received a makeover.

“These kinds of projects don’t just happen,” Taylor-Smith says. “NCCP flagged the needs of these schools to us. They are inside the schools and know what the schools and community need.”

“The community school model, developed by NCCP, really puts the child at the center and sets them up as successful students,” says Taylor-Smith. “We are involved in many ways, big and small.” As a company, in addition to supplying a steady stream of volunteers for programs and events, AbbVie supports everything from eyeglasses to curriculum purchases to event funding to staff appreciation incentives and more.

“Our approach to how we give back to the community has in part been shaped by true collaboration with NCCP and District 187”, says Taylor-Smith. “NCCP is with the kids during and after school hours, they are connected to parents, and they are very much aligned with teaching staff and senior leadership of the district. They really care about the child.”