SCA Chicago

The SCA is a national non-profit changing lives through hands-on conservation work in the outdoors. Our program participants protect and restore national parks, marine sanctuaries, cultural landmarks and community green spaces at various locations across the country. After working with the SCA, program participants emerge with increased environmental awareness, social responsibility and leadership skills.

Through its Urban Green Program, the SCA provides young people with paid green jobs, including single-day service projects, seasonal work and year-long internships or fellowships. In Chicago, participants plant trees, build trails and restore habitats while exploring green job opportunities, building leadership skills, and learning about the local environment through environmental education field trips, outdoor recreation and service projects.

The SCA Chicago Community Program offers volunteer and paid service opportunities for young adults starting in the spring and high school summer programs (running July through August). Volunteer programs take place on weekends, while paid service programs run Monday-Friday during summer at sites in and around Chicago. The SCA fielded its first community conservation program in Chicago in 2010.

During the program, participants learn how to work as members of a diverse team of peers; gain knowledge of public land resources, environmental issues, and career readiness skills; increase their understanding of environmental and trail restoration techniques; acquire experience in public service and outdoor recreation; and develop valuable professional skills through teambuilding and leadership activities.

Trainings Offered

  • CPR Certification
  • Resume Building
  • Leave No Trace (LNT) Outdoor Ethics
  • Financial Literacy
  • Habitat Restoration
  • Trail Skills

Eligibility Requirements

Applicants must be at least 14 years of age or in high school for teen school year and summer programs. For young adult programs, applicants must be at least 18 years of age. Other requirements vary by position. In order to participate in paid programs, applicants must be able to produce valid citizenship documents.

Key Partners


SCA Chicago Office
P.O. Box 23288
Chicago, IL 60623
O: (312) 239-1665