Elam Davies Social Service Center

Welcome to the Chicago Lights Elam Davies Social Service Center (EDSSC).
We welcome and support adults in times of need by offering individual supportive service assistance, including food, clothing, and referrals to other social service agencies.

For thirty years the Center has carried out the vision of former Fourth Presbyterian Church Pastor Elam Davies: to serve those in need with dignity and respect. Our success is sustained by well-structured, responsive programs, which are described below.

Hours | Housing Information Seminar
Food Pantry | Share Shop | Supportive Services
Volunteer Opportunities | Contact Information


9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday

Closed from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday for staff lunch

Closed from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. Tuesdays for staff meeting

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Housing Information Seminar

  • No appointment necessary
  • Seminar is a prerequisite to receiving an individual housing information appointment
  • Topics covered include
              Subsidized housing
              Single-Room Occupancy (SRO)
              Affordable housing
              Available resources

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Food Pantry

By appointment only

  • Groceries provided for guests
  • Eligibility is once every two months
  • Cooking limitations and dietary restrictions accommodated
  • Through Consumer Choice, guests are given a shopping list and volunteer aide to guide them as they fill their cart with the allotted number of items they’d like from the pantry

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Share Shop (Clothing Closet)

By appointment only

  • 20-minute sessions for the clothing closet
  • 2 shopping bags provided
  • Eligibility is every two months

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Supportive Services

  • Referrals to other social service agencies; proper documentation may be required
  • Health-related referrals
  • Employment training resources
  • Assistance with public benefits application available by appointment

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Volunteer Opportunities

  • Aides and substitutes for the Consumer Choice Food Pantry to help guests on Thursday mornings and other times as needed
    Through Consumer Choice, guests of the food pantry are given a shopping list, and the volunteer aide will guide them as they fill their cart with the allotted number of items they’d like from the pantry.

  • Share Shop sorters to go through donated clothing items and assistants to guests selecting clothing
    Shifts available are Tuesday mornings, Wednesday mornings and afternoons, or Friday afternoons. Volunteers may work alone or in small groups on a rotating schedule.

  • Donations of new and used clothing, nonperishable food items, clean towels, toiletries, and more are gladly accepted by the Social Service Center.

To volunteer or donate items, contact Jill Keiser (312.981.3590).

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Contact Information

          126 E. Chestnut Street
          Chicago, IL 60611.2014

          312.787.2729, ext. 2222




Social Service Center Photos

Open Doors Project Graduation 2015 | May 13, 2015

More information about the Elam Davies Social Service Center is available on the Chicago Lights website or by contacting Jackie Lorens (312.981.3567), Director of the EDSSC.

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