About care-bags.org…

Care-Bags.org began in April of 2013. This site is dedicated to the ongoing creation and delivery of care bags for the homeless people in Logan Square, Chicago. The care bags are a vehicle for better understanding and sharing with the homeless of our community. This site is a resource for those wanting to understand, make their own care bags, Information about assistance in the Chicago community as well as weekly updates, video interviews with the homeless and much more. 


3rd Annual Fundraiser for Care-Bags.org

My name is Gene Pellegrene and I have been making 5-7 care bags a week since April, 2013 for the homeless in my community in Chicago. Over 500 care bags full of nutritious snacks, much needed toiletries, first aid, clothing and assistance information have been delivered since this all began.  Care-bags is a very small operation that has had a tremendous positive reach reach. With your much needed help, I’m seeking 12 months of funding. Please click on the FundAnything photo link below to make an “any size” donation. 100% of your secure donation goes to help the homeless.

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Great News!

I just received the BEST email, I’m not sure how they heard about care-bags.org but this donation is a huge help. I’m so grateful for this. It means a lot that a large company like Kleenex would find this tiny movement of care-bags.org meaningful to the community and respond this way. Thank you Kleenex! To keep up with the weekly care-bags blog click here: or in the menu tab above.


I’m reaching out on behalf of my client, Kleenex brand. We have a surplus of 2000 travel packs of Kleenex facial tissue that we would love to donate to Care-bags. Could you provide me with more information on where to send the product (I don’t think we’ll be able to send a package to a PO box).

On behalf of Kleenex brand


iPod donations:

Music, a huge part of our emotional lives, can take us away to other places and uplift us when we need it most. Many studies have shown, Music is an integral part of our overall health and well being. It has a potent effect on our psyche. Smartphones are taking the place of our old iPods, making them obsolete. If any of you have an old, working iPod and want to donate it to a homeless person, you can do so by sending them directly to me, Gene Pellegrene at P.O. Box 479304, Chicago, IL 60647 or bring it to one of the Winter Wear Drives taking place in December. You can breathe new life into your former mp3 player and bring someone great joy. Please include the charging cord and any manuals. You can leave the songs on the devise or reset to factory settings, I will then reload the mp3 players with the recipients favorite songs or genre.





Making care bags for the homeless started in April of 2013.  I had some clothing I wanted to donate to local homeless in my neighborhood.  While organizing the clothing, I decided to include water, clif bars and some other items around my home.  I began to devote thought to what I personally would need if I was living homeless.  That process created a lot of empathy and understanding which transcends into other areas of life. Since the beginning, many clothing/knitting drives have been organized, hundreds of care bags have been made, discussions/organizing efforts at local schools and businesses and many people have made their own care bags to deliver in their communities.  In November, 2013, my efforts along with the tremendous support of my community and friends,  awarded me the inaugural LaVerne Gage Award by The ReVive Center for Housing and Healing.       

The care packages contain variations of the following and are made and delivered every weekend, bottles of water, gatorade, nutritional drink, wet wipes, tissues, antacid tablets, notebooks, pens, deodorant, vitamins, first aid, medicated powder, chapstick, sunscreen, zip-loc bags, fresh fruit, gum, peanut butter sandwich crackers,  granola bars, sweet and salty nut bars, nutrigrain bar, sun chips, gogo squeez applesauce packet, larabars, clif bars, slim jims/beef jerky, luna bars, candy bar, nuts, trail mix and a packet of various homeless shelters and resources in the city, address, numbers and services they provide. The biodegradable paper bags are donated by Strack & Van Til of Logan Square, Chicago.  For assistance making your own care bags, follow this link.

Video interviews are an important part of shedding light on the struggles of the homeless.  I have learned so much about these people, my community and myself.  I am developing relationships with these men and woman and in turn sharing my experiences that wouldn’t have been possible without the vehicle of the care bags.  I urge people that live where homelessness is present to create care bags for themselves and experience the positive effects on the recipients but most of all to themselves.  There are many ways you can help lessen the struggle of the homeless.  You can create your own care bags, donate to this cause or just asking a homeless person their name does more than you could ever imagine.  Big thanks To Anthony Sutton, S X Tech, Inc., for donating this site.