History Meets Social Media as UCAN Celebrates 150 Years of Service

The initial social media graphic from UCAN.

UCAN, a Chicago-based CHHSM member ministry serving youth in crisis, is recognizing its sesquicentennial in a unique and creative way: each day for the 150 days leading up to its birthday, UCAN will be using various social media platforms to share interesting facts about its history.

“The graphics and posts will be made daily and, for the most part, will be posted in chronological order,” says Tamara Reed Tran, associate vice president of development. “Occasionally, we will interject some facts based on a theme.”

For example, the first internet graphic lifts up 1866, when members of what today is St. Pauls UCC in Chicago committed to care for children and youth whose fathers might not return from the Civil War. Other graphics concentrate on interesting stories from the history of UCAN, the city of Chicago, and the social service industry in the area.

Top: The Uhlich Orphan Home in 1928. Bottom: UCAN today.

The daily posts will culminate in March, when UCAN celebrates its 150th birthday. The exact date — March 10 — marks the day in 1869 when the Evangelical Lutheran Orphan Asylum was incorporated in Illinois.

The official anniversary will be celebrated March 29 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Chicago History Museum. In addition to an extensive display of artifacts from UCAN’s history, the evening will include a short program and cocktail reception.

“The museum holds many of our artifacts, and we will be submitting additional ones in 2019,” Reed Tran says. The March event also will celebrate UCAN’s vision that youth who suffer trauma can become future leaders.

Visit UCAN’s special interactive timeline of its history.

Follow these social media platforms to read UCAN’s daily historical entries:

LinkedIn: UCAN Chicago

Twitter: @UCANchicago

Instagram: @UCANchicago

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CHHSM Board and Staff are grieved to learn of the death of our friend and colleague, Greg Watson, who died in October 2022. Greg was vice president of operations for Embrace Living Communities, based in Oak Brook, Ill.Greg was a graduate of CHHSM’s Nollau Leadership Institute, class of 2018-2019, and was consecrated as a Diakonal Minister during our 2019 Annual Gathering in Chicago. In an article about his class in June 2018 — not long after the group’s first retreat — Greg said, “The best part is not only beginning the process of clarifying your calling; but also, understanding and accepting one’s personal strength. Recognition of one’s ‘true' self enables us to serve from a place of wholeness.”Greg also served on the CHHSM Board of Directors, and was a beloved friend and colleague to many in the CHHSM family. Embrace Living stated on its website, “Greg was an outstanding servant leader for 17 years at Embrace Living Communities. He will be greatly missed.”CHHSM sends its prayers and love to Greg’s friends, family, and Embrace Living colleagues. ... See MoreSee Less
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