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Get to Know JPA

About JPA

We believe, along with Jane Addams, that our children, especially those living in severe conditions, need access to programs and services that will enable them to learn, grow, and lead productive lives. By providing therapeutic services to children in challenged neighborhoods, JPA helps them repair the connections broken by violence, instability, and alienation. 


Therapy for elementary and middle school children, combined with helping their teachers understand the effects of trauma and how to deal with it, greatly increases the chances that all those involved will have more positive experiences and outlooks on life, education, and personal growth. It's not just a "feel good" process; it's a way to help children build strong social and emotional foundations for their future success. 

Our Mission

The mission of the Juvenile Protective Association is to improve the social and emotional well-being and functioning of vulnerable children so they can reach their fullest potential at home, in school, and in our communities. We accomplish this by providing therapeutic counseling services to at-risk children and families, conducting research, sharing knowledge, and providing expert consultation and guidance to others serving them.

Jane Addams co-founded JPA in 1901.

Our History

Although Jane Addams came from a well-to-do family, she clearly saw the desperate need of children living in poverty without families or empathetic guidance. But she didn't simply give money or gift baskets at holidays. She, along with several dedicated friends and colleagues, established Chicago's Hull House in order to live with the children and families she wished to help. They shared their lives and experiences, and their total involvement with the downtrodden and ignored created a powerful model of social justice and reform that sets the standard even today. 


Addams and her colleagues founded JPA as the Juvenile Protective League in 1901, eventually merging with other organizations to become JPA. It provided the first probation officers for the first Juvenile Court in the United States until this became a government function. From 1907 until the 1940s, JPA conducted and published many studies examining such subjects as racism, child labor and exploitation, drug abuse and prostitution in Chicago and their effects on child development. 

Today, JPA's Dedicated Team
Continues In Her Spirit

Our Team

"The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life."

 -Jane Addams 

Our Community Partners

JPA proudly collaborates with child welfare agencies throughout Chicago providing essential services to local residents. If your agency is interested in partnering with JPA, please contact us.

Chicago Children's

Advocacy Center,

Illinois Children's

Trauma Coalition

Community Mental Health Partnership at Children’s Place Association (CPA)

Prevention Services through Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation

Community Partners
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