Happy Birthday Lisa Fittko!

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We hope this message finds you well and that you have all you need in these times. We want to say thank you to the supporters of the Lisa Fittko Internship Fund at Crossroads Fund. The 15-year-old paid internship program is an integral part of Crossroads Fund’s mission to support the development of youth organizers and activists in Chicago.

We want to share a note from the 2019 Lisa Fittko intern, Alexis Sanchez Boyzo, the 10th intern of the program.

My introduction to Crossroads Fund was through the Lisa Fittko internship program. I was lucky to have the opportunity to use and grow my skills in a wholesome way through people that cultivate hope.

When I think about Lisa’s legacy and her friends that created this opportunity, I can’t help but get inspired to continue to seed hope throughout my lifetime. Lisa was fearless and faced the wrath of fascism by running away from the Gestapo and escorting refugees on a tortuous path over the Pyrenees mountains so they could seek safety when Hitler’s Nazi empire was taking over Europe. I am still learning to cultivate hope and eventually will be able to seed it.

My internship at Crossroads Fund, I would say, has been unusual and honestly quite a journey. At the start, it all seemed to be going well. We were planning for our annual benefit Seeds of Change 2020 when the COVID19 pandemic began to spread in the United States, slapping the whole world still. My project at Crossroads Fund was to document how our grantees responded to the inequities that surfaced from the pandemic through photography and video. Amid a pandemic and global uprisings for racial justice after the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police, I have grown to understand the importance of relationships building that is strengthened when we choose to trust one another. What comes after trust is the power of organizing with people that care about you and others. When a country fails to look out for you, looking out for one another becomes a priority. All this to say, in the words of Miriame Kaba, "Everything worthwhile is done with others."

My internship experience has been transformative, and for that, I thank everyone, especially the friends of Lisa Fittko, who have made this opportunity possible. - Alexis Sanchez Boyzo

As Crossroads Fund celebrates 40 Years Rooted in Radical Change and Lisa’s birthday, we thank you for being part of Lisa’s legacy. Your support has made the difference in building youth leaders who are making a difference and creating their legacies of change. Will you consider making a gift today to continue our tradition of fostering the growth of young Chicago leaders? Your gift of any amount will be pooled to support the Lisa Fittko Internship at Crossroads Fund for years to come.

Thank you!

Jacqueline Kirley and Jaquelyn Zevin
Friends of Lisa Fittko 


The Life of Lisa Fittko Told by Vreni Naess

WATCH: The Life of Lisa Fittko Told by Vreni Naess

The Lisa Fittko Internship at Crossroads Fund was established by the friends of Lisa Fittko to honor her legacy as a social justice activist. All her life, on two continents, Lisa advocated and worked for social justice and political rights. From her teenage years until she fled Europe in 1941, Lisa worked to oppose fascism. She and her husband helped to lead people out of Nazi-occupied France into Spain. Lisa passed away in 2005. Through the Lisa Fittko Internship program, she is remembered by her friends, family, and a global community of individuals.