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Chicago Automobile Trade Association Donates $1,500 to the Chicago Community Works & Sports Alternative

The Chicago Automobile Trade Association (CATA), Chicagoland’s new-car dealer association, recently donated $1,500 to the Chicago Community Works and Sports Alternative. The donation came via the CATA’s Chicagoland Dealers Care program in conjunction with a $5,000 donation by Pugi Auto Group of Downers Grove. Through Chicagoland Dealers Care, the CATA matches up to $1,500 of a member dealer’s donation to local charitable organizations.

The Chicago Community Works and Sports Alternative was founded in 1991 as an anti-gang and drugs organization for students after school. One of the most well-known programs that Community Works and Sports Alternative produces is the Chicago Jokers football team, which greatly benefits from these donations by providing equipment and transportation for students on the football team. Many Jokers return to coach the team, and some even go on to have a professional football career. Most recently, Jokers alumni Jayden Reed was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the second round of the 2023 NFL Draft.

In addition to the Chicago Jokers football program, the organization also supports students through etiquette and mentoring programs. There are currently more than 80 students participating throughout the organization.

“We are proud to provide these students a safe place to come together,” said Eric McLendon, Chicago Community Works and Sports Alternative founder and president. “Now they have the courage and resources to say ‘no’ when faced with questionable decisions.”

The CATA has been a longtime supporter of local nonprofit organizations. Since its inception in 2008, the grassroots Chicagoland Dealers Care program has donated more than $125,000 to local charitable organizations. Additionally, since 1992, the association has raised more than $60 million for Chicago-area charities during the annual First Look for Charity black-tie event, traditionally held the evening before the Chicago Auto Show opens to the public.  

“The CATA’s Chicagoland Dealers Care program makes our member’s donation dollars go further and also highlights the positive impact that new-car dealers have within their communities,” said CATA Chairwoman Kelly Webb Roberts. “We applaud local dealers like Pugi Auto Group for their very generous contributions to supporting their community.”

For more details on the Chicagoland Dealers Care program, please visit


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