Uniting Youth Across chicago Through Circus Arts

CircEsteem’s mission is to unite youth across all backgrounds and identities by fostering self-esteem and mutual respect through the practice and performance of circus arts.

Our Community

We are a judgement-free, inclusive neighborhood hub, where youth build lasting relationships through collaboration and performance. We actively partner with families and like-minded organizations throughout the Chicago area to create resource-rich environments for the youth we serve.

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Our Students

CircEsteem provides youth opportunities to evolve artistically, personally, and professionally. Our students uphold the principles of resilience, unity, creative expression, and self-advocacy.

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Our Staff

We are creative leaders with a passion for youth development who are role models facilitating culturally responsive relationships within our community through intelligence, diversity, equity and inclusion. We approach this work with humility, patience, love, and continued self-reflection. We are active participants in strengthening our organizational culture.

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Our Equity Lens

We meet youth where they are. In order to cultivate a safe space for participants to take risks and experience success while being uniquely themselves, we have adopted practices that work to challenge systematized class structures. We center youth voices as we support their growth as individuals and members of the CircEsteem community.

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Kids playing with hula hoops
CircEsteem staff members
Children working on a human pyramid
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A child working on homework with a mentor

HomeWork & CircusWork

Located in a number of CPS schools across Chicago and our Uptown Headquarters, HomeWork & CircusWork (HWCW) is a free after school program for youth.

Chicago Youth Circus

Our popular Saturday program offers youth the opportunity to investigate and practice a variety of circus skills with mixed-aged youth led by teen mentors and highly skilled teaching artists. Now offered in Uptown (CYC-NORTH) and Humboldt Park (CYC-WEST).

Performance Troupe

CircEsteem’s Performance Troupe is designed for experienced youth seeking to advance their skills to the next level and participate in performance opportunities through CircEsteem.

Serving Chicago smiles since 2001

“To see the look in a kid’s eyes when they first juggle or spin a plate, it’s like a light goes off. It’s just so magical to see”

Sam Brown, Teaching Artist

Children enjoying a CircEsteem birthday partyA little girl with face paint and a balloon hat at a CircEsteem birthday party

WE BRING THE FUN TO YOU

Parties & Workshops

Hire CircEsteem for your next birthday, bar/bat mitzvah, parade, corporate or professional sporting event. We provide strolling performers, interactive circus workshops, and fully produced circus shows.

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Donate

CircEsteem relies on the generosity of its donors and partners.

Volunteer

Opportunities include, but are not limited to: Tutoring and Performance Support.

Careers

Make the circle bigger. From acrobatics to accounting, we appreciate your help!