Robyn and Mike

Mike and Robyn met in 2014 and it was love at first sight. They shared a dream to one day become parents. A few years later, they got married and began their journey to start a family. After difficulty conceiving, they decided to contact a fertility clinic for some extra help. Currently, they are on their third round of IVF and hoping …

Jessica and Rob

The path to having a second child has been more of an adventure than we expected. We tried on our own and with IUI, then found out we are both carriers for a genetic disease. After several rounds of IVF, we have been through a lot of the emotional and physical work that accompanies painful loss. None of this was …

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Shkendie and Jon

Shkendie and I (Jon) met in a jazz club in 2019. After many date nights at the Chicago Symphony, we quickly made a life together based on mutual respect, shared values and a love of travel, nature, food, art and music. From the beginning, it was always easy to talk about the big stuff, i.e. family planning, religion, and our …

Photograph of 2023 Grantee in pumpkin patch

Julia

I can’t express enough gratitude for this opportunity. Like everyone else here, life has taken me down a different path than what I expected and planned. The Chicago Coalition for Family Building is giving people like me the opportunity to prepare themselves to be single parents by choice while giving me the time to prepare financially, emotionally, physically and continue …

Ben

Welcome to the biography of a (hopefully, soon to be) single gay Jewish dad, with unwavering determination and love for adventure, who is embarking on a unique path to fatherhood. For as long as I could remember, I have nurtured a deep desire to be a father. This idea has fueled my ambition and guided many of my life choices. …

2023 Grantee couple

Dan and Danny

We met in June 2011 through a mutual friend and were immediately drawn to each other’s warmth, sense of humor, and commitment to social justice. Since then, we have made a home with and for each other, building a loving community and strong partnership. We were married in the summer of 2018, and soon after, began more seriously discussing our …

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Tyler and Morgan

My husband and I have been married for three years and have been trying to conceive for two. After three failed attempts with IUI, we were faced with the decision to try another IUI cycle or move on to IVF. Unfortunately, we did not have the funds to cover an IVF cycle, but luckily a family friend told us about …

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Kelly and Mike

We met at a mutual friend’s wedding in Iowa in October 2016 and the rest was history. We got married in August 2021 and have been trying to start a family of our own ever since. We both come from a family of four, so having a big family of our own has always been our dream. After a year …

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Dorothy and Chris

Our love story began as a long-distance relationship. We met online eight years ago; we lived in two different states but met for our first date in a mutual city and the rest is history. We continued our relationship living states away and seeing each other when time permitted. Months into dating, I was picked up to go on Active …

Couple standing in front of Central Perk

Iva and Erald

Earlier this year, we discussed the possibility of expanding our family. The associated costs tied to our care were high, but our financial counselor shared alternate options and also mentioned CCFB. With this advice and the incredible help from CCFB, things started to make sense. We’re really thankful for this opportunity and it’s given us a lot of hope. The …

Picture of 2023 Grantee couple in the woods

Sara and Blake

The beginning of our story is not unlike many love stories; we met, fell in love almost instantly, and were married surrounded by family and friends. The middle is where we have found our challenges as the path to parenthood has encountered many twists, turns, and seemingly impassable mountains. We are hoping with the support of this grant, we will …

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Sidney and Maximillion

My husband and I have always cherished the thought of children and having a large family. We met prior to me joining the military.  We were married halfway through my training in Texas, and we have been together through California, Japan and now Illinois. Sharing this experience with the love of my life has been a fun and life changing …

Picture of 2023 Grantee couple on wedding day

Sarah and Sean

Sean and I met in 2018. I think what initially drew us to each other was the closeness we shared with our immediate families. We are both the middle child and have siblings with children whom we absolutely adore. Having met later in life, the conversation of marriage and children came up early. We both knew that in the very …

Anthony and Timothy

We met in late 2014 in stereotypical millennial fashion: online dating. After two years, it was clear we complemented each other very well and wanted to spend the rest of our lives together; however, there was one matter to settle—the desire to have children. It came as no surprise to us that building a family was a shared priority, profoundly …

2023 Grantee couple on vacation

Jessica and Matias

We welcomed our son in June 2020 and he is truly our miracle baby. After suffering from recurrent pregnancy loss and multiple rounds of IVF, we were so excited to be pregnant with our rainbow baby. When the pandemic hit in March, we thought that would be the craziest thing to happen during our pregnancy. But, at 30 weeks pregnant, …

2023 Grantee couple

Brianna and Brandon

Bri underwent testing at 16 years old due to Unexplained Amenorrhoea. Following a blood analysis, she was referred to a reproductive endocrinologist where she was diagnosed with Premature Ovarian Failure (POF) and Osteopenia in her spine as a result. It was then she learned she would need to use donated eggs to have children one day. Since her diagnosis, Bri …

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Kim

Being a mother was always my plan. I have a storage locker full of items from my childhood and travels abroad that I am so excited to share. I have always yearned to pass down my Jewish traditions and values and to show my children the world’s cultures and countries that I have extensively explored. I am a Special Educator …

Young couple under their chuppah

Sloane and Jeremy

Jeremy and I (Sloane) met in 2017 and got married in December 2022. Ever since I was a little girl I have always wanted to marry the guy of my dreams and to become a mom. When I was six months old, I was diagnosed with a genetic disorder that is characterized by the development of non-cancerous tumors on nerves …

Tieanna and Christopher

Family Stories Tieanna and ChristopherMy husband and I met in Florida through a mutual friend. We decided to start trying for a baby as soon as we started dating as we were into our thirties, plus I am a military service member and time apart seemed longer than time together. We got married merely weeks before I had to leave for …

Sam and Phil

Family Stories Sam and PhilWe have been together for 20 life-changing years, delighted to be married for 17 of them and aching to build our family for the last 12 to share our love of children, family and traditions. Unfortunately, our path to parenthood has not been one without strife. Time after time we were wrought with unforeseen family obligations, simultaneously …

Theresa and Peter

Family Stories Theresa and PeterHello! Our names are Peter and Theresa. We are so grateful to be awarded the Family Building Grant. We met at a bar that no longer exists in Evanston, Illinois. Introduced through a mutual friend, the way we began dating was slightly different and comical in some sense. Fast forward five years and we were married in …

Penelope and Robert

Family Stories Penelope and RobertPenelope and Robert were fortunate to meet later in life and after a few years, they decided they wanted to start a family together. Unfortunately, previous fertility planning decisions caused a roadblock, and their project would now require a bit of help. Luckily, they found wonderful doctors that revealed the fascinating and miraculous world of assisted reproductive …

Michelle and Jason

Family Stories Michelle and JasonWe met as teenagers while working a summer job and began dating the following year. Nine years later we got married, and this year marks our sixth wedding anniversary. We always knew we wanted kids but never thought we would struggle with infertility. After being diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) at the age of 18, we …

Megan and Bob

Family Stories Megan and BobEver since I (Megan) was a little girl, I dreamed of becoming two things: a nurse and a mother. My entire nursing career thus far has been dedicated to the care of women and children. While I have had success meeting my professional nursing career goals, I have not been successful in fulfilling my second childhood dream. …

Jamie and Richard

Family Stories Jamie and RichardWe have been struggling to get pregnant for several years. After going through three years of unsuccessful intrauterine insemination (IUI) procedures, it was clear we needed to go down a different path if we wanted to become pregnant. It took some time to mourn the idea that we were not going to be able to get pregnant …