Higher Education Grants in Illinois
Higher Education Grants in Illinois
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US Bancorp Foundation
Making community possible
At U.S. Bank, we are dedicated to supporting our communities through responsive and humbled actions focused on addressing racial and economic inequities and creating lasting change in our communities. Through our Community Possible Grant Program, we are partnering with organizations that focus on economic and workforce advancement, safe and affordable housing and communities connected through arts and culture.
The U.S. Bank Foundation is committed to making Community Possible through Work, Home and Play. We advance this work through collaborative grant making to bring equitable and lasting change through our focus on sustainable, high-impact funding with 501c3 nonprofit partners.
Children and families are better positioned to thrive and succeed in a home that is safe and permanent. Access to sustainable low-income housing is increasingly challenging for low- to moderate-income families. In response, our giving supports efforts that connect individuals and families with sustainable housing opportunities.
Access to safe, affordable energy-efficient housing
We provide financial support to assist people in developing stability in their lives through access to safe, sustainable and accessible homes. Examples of grant support include:
- Organizations that preserve, rehabilitate, renovate or construct affordable housing developments for low- and moderate-income families, individuals, seniors, veterans, and special-needs populations
- Organizations that provide transitional housing as a direct stepping stone to permanent housing
- Organizations that focus on veterans housing and homeownership
- Construction of green homes for low- and moderate-income communities
- Clean energy retrofit programs for low- and moderate-income housing developments
- Organizations that provide access to renewable energy
- Improving waste management systems to include recycling and composting programs
Owning and maintaining a home requires significant financial knowledge, tools and resources. We support programs that assist low- and moderate-income homebuyers and existing homeowners. Examples of grant support include:
- Homebuyer education
- Pre- and post-purchase counseling and coaching
- Homeownership-retention programs designed to provide foreclosure counseling
We know that a strong small business environment and an educated workforce ensure the prosperity of our communities and reduce the expanding wealth gap for communities of color. We provide grant support to programs and organizations that help small businesses thrive, allow people to succeed in the workforce, provide pathways to higher education and gain greater financial literacy.
Investing in the workforce
We fund organizations that provide training for small business development, as well as programs that support individuals across all skill and experience levels, to ensure they have the capability to gain employment that supports individuals and their families. Examples of grant support include:
- Small business technical assistance programs
- Job skills, career readiness training programs with comprehensive placement services for low- and moderate-income individuals entering or reentering the labor force
Providing pathways for educational success
- To address the growing requirements for post-secondary education in securing competitive jobs in the workplace, we support:
- Organizations and programs that help low- and moderate-income and at-risk middle and high school students prepare for post-secondary education at a community college, university, trade or technical school and career readiness
- Programs and initiatives at post-secondary institutions that support access to career and educational opportunities for low- and moderate-income and diverse students
Teaching financial well-being for work and life
Financial well-being is not only critical for financial stability, it’s crucial in helping individuals be successful in the workplace. Examples of grant support include programs that positively impact:
- K-12 and college student financial literacy
- Adult and workforce financial literacy
- Senior financial fraud prevention
- Military service member and veteran financial literacy
Supporting the green economy through workforce development
The green economy is fast becoming an area of opportunity for workforce development programs. Funding support includes:
- Reskilling or retraining for jobs in renewable or clean energy
- Building and maintaining infrastructure to support renewable energy, including EV charging stations and bike/transportation programs
Play brings joy, and it’s just as necessary for adults as it is for kids. But in low-income areas there are often limited spaces for play and fewer people attending arts and cultural events. That’s why we invest in community programming that supports ways for children and adults to play and create.
Access to artistic and cultural programming and arts education
Our investments ensure economic vitality and accessibility to the arts in local communities, as well as support for arts education. Examples of grant support include:
- Programs that provide access to cultural activities, visual and performing arts, zoos and aquariums and botanic gardens for individuals and families living in underserved communities
- Funding for local arts organizations that enhance the economic vitality of the community
- Programs that provide funding for arts-focused nonprofit organizations that bring visual and performing arts programming to low- and moderate-income K-12 schools and youth centers
Supporting learning through play
Many young people across the country do not have the resources or access to enjoy the benefits of active play. Supporting active play-based programs and projects for K-12 students located in or serving low- and moderate-income communities fosters innovation, creativity, and collaboration and impacts the overall vitality of the communities we serve. Funding support includes:
- Support for organizations that build or expand access to active play spaces and places that help K-12 students learn through play and improves the health, safety and unification of neighborhoods in low- and moderate-income communities
- Programs that focus on using active play to help young people develop cognitive, social and emotional learning skills to become vibrant and productive citizens in low- and moderate-income communities
Outdoor places to play
Environmental stewardship enhances and improves the livability of our communities. Supporting efforts to preserve, protect and enhance outdoor spaces is now part of our Play pillar of giving. Funding support includes:
- Cleanup efforts in community spaces, including (but not limited to) beaches, rivers, and streams
- Protecting green spaces within the community, including planting trees, mangroves and seagrass
- Programs that support community, native and/or pollinator gardens, including community composting
Dekalb County Community Foundation
NOTE: Applicants requesting $20,000 or more must contact the Grants Director by February 1 for the spring grant season or August 1 for the fall grant season. Applications of $20,000 or more that have not been vetted with the Community Foundation by February 1 or August 1 will not be accepted (letter of inquiry deadline above).
Community Needs Grants
Through the Community Needs Grants program, the DeKalb County Community Foundation supports the charitable needs and efforts of nonprofit and public sector organizations throughout DeKalb County, Illinois.
The Community Foundation believes in supporting projects that will have a significant impact within the community. The Board has broadly defined these priorities for the Community Needs Grant program:
- Support organizations with projects that enhance the quality of life in DeKalb County.
- Assist existing agencies to better respond to clearly defined unmet needs within the community.
- Encourage programs and projects that enhance cooperation and collaboration among organizations within DeKalb County.
- Examples of collaboration include partnerships, demonstrating community leadership, and being a contributing member of the DeKalb County Nonprofit Partnership (DCNP).
- Leverage funds and in-kind support, such as using "seed" money, "match" and "challenge" grants and funds from multiple sources.
The Community Foundation provides Community Needs Grants in the following areas:
Arts and Culture – supports organizations that provide opportunities for access, participation, education, awareness, and appreciation for a variety of arts and cultural experiences.
Community Development – supports organizations that focus broadly on strengthening, unifying and building the economic, cultural, and social services of a community.
Education - Supports organizations that provide educational opportunities from birth to adulthood.
Environment and Animal Welfare – supports organizations whose primary purpose is to preserve, protect, conserve and improve the environment. Animal Welfare supports organizations that promote the well-being of animals.
Health and Human Services – supports organizations that provide essential programs and services addressing basic human needs to children, youth, adults, and senior citizens, and/or promoting physical and mental health.
McGraw Foundation, headquartered in Northbrook, Illinois, makes annual grants to not-for-profit organizations. The Foundation’s areas of interest involve the fields of conservation, educational programs at all levels, and human services. Occasionally, grants are made in other areas such as health, medical research and cultural.
Grant requests are suggested to be within a range of $2,000 to $10,000. Grant recipients and amounts will be determined by several criteria. Naturally, availability of funds is a key factor.
The Foundation will occasionally make large grants ($25,000 or more) to support unusually promising efforts in any of its areas of interest. Innovative research, special education, and/or other activities will be considered if the Foundation’s support would assist an effort or a project in making a significant impact.
Areas of Focus
The Foundation has been a pioneer in support of environmental education at the highest level by establishing three chaired professorships.
Education: Elementary & Special
McGraw Foundation supports a wide array of organizations that focus on assisting the education and advancement of children as well as adults. McGraw Foundation also makes grants to elementary schools and organizations involved in all areas of special needs education. Funding in this arena has encompassed many organizations that provide services such as after-school tutoring, special education, and adult literacy.
Since 1949, McGraw Foundation has been concerned with helping people in need. While the emphasis is on organizations serving children, funding also extends to people of all ages.
Children's issues such as these have been supported throughout the years:
- child welfare
- foster care and adoption
- family counseling
- enriching summer camps
- crisis intervention
Funding for quality-of-life issues for people of all ages has included:
- developmental disabilities
- health clinics
- domestic violence
- housing and homelessness
- job training and continued support
- seniors needs
Health & Medical
Since its inception, McGraw Foundation has made grants in the health and medical fields. Health and medical funding has included:
- specific medical research
- support programs for patients and their families
- medical attention for people without health insurance
- palliative care and hospice organizations
Civic & Cultural
Complimenting it's main focus on education and the environment, McGraw Foundation has supported some of Chicago's distinctive cultural and arts organizations.
Areas of interest include zoological societies' animal conservation, public communication, musical organizations, and civic organizations' promotion of science and the general welfare of society.
Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust
The great majority of grants are given to organizations located in, and for projects to be conducted within, the state of Iowa and portions of Illinois, as well as to other organizations in which Mr. Carver had an interest during his lifetime. Generally speaking, the Carver Trust supports biomedical and scientific research, scholarships, and programs addressing the educational and recreational needs of youth.
Elementary and Secondary Education
Supporting educational opportunities for youth, beginning with kindergarten and continuing through high school graduation, is a cornerstone of Carver Trust giving. Grant-making activities in this area may be divided into three, broad categories, each with the goal of enhancing access to resources and the application of innovative approaches to teaching and learning. Read more about this program area.
The Trust’s interests in the area of higher education extend to those projects that strengthen institutions and offer innovative learning opportunities to students enrolled in baccalaureate and graduate programs throughout the grant-making region of Iowa and parts of Illinois. Typically, funding is awarded to capital or programmatic initiatives that seek to substantively improve instruction or increase access to educational resources, with the goal of better preparing students for future academic and professional challenges. Projects incorporating interdisciplinary approaches and demonstrating the potential for lasting impact among a diverse range of students are especially encouraged. Read more about this program area.
Medical and Scientific Research
The goal of the Trust’s program in medical and scientific research is to provide support for innovative investigation that may hold great promise for advancing scientific knowledge and, in many cases, improving human health. To this end, the Trust has supported a variety of university-based scientific endeavors, most notably in the basic medical sciences, the chemical and biological sciences, and engineering. Although a majority of funding is awarded for the purpose of addressing institutional capital needs, a parallel focus of this program area is the research efforts of particular laboratories, often emphasizing multidisciplinary approaches and encouraging the development of untried, and inherently risky, specific aims. Read more about this program area.
Youth Services and Recreation
Projects receiving Trust funding under the youth program designation are typically designed to complement curriculum-based education and encourage individual development and physical well-being. Of the grants awarded within this category, a significant portion has been directed toward the efforts of organizations advocating for disadvantaged and disabled youth and their families. As an example, improving the conditions at adolescent residential facilities in Iowa, including those that offer opportunities for special-needs populations, has represented an important area of Trust charitable giving around the state.
In addition, grants to help communities establish safe and affordable recreation opportunities are also part of the youth-directed programming. The Trust offers strategic funding for the development of public recreation facilities and related activities for children, with priority given to projects in the Iowa counties of Muscatine, Cedar, Louisa and Scott, as well as Rock Island and Mercer Counties in Illinois. More information on the youth recreation program area may be found under Trust Initiated Programming & Guidelines.
Grants listed under this designation are those that, for various reasons, do not fall within the Trust’s primary program classifications. Many grants classified as miscellaneous are for projects receiving special consideration for their direct impact on the local Muscatine region.
Awards in this category of Trust giving may, for example, provide support to organizations mobilizing to help area residents following a natural disaster or emergency, such as flooding or storm damage. Other assistance of this type has been directed to local first-responder and law enforcement agencies, which have received occasional support for specialized medical, firefighting and policing equipment, as well as situations whereby certain area nonprofits are seeking one-time support for urgent capital or programming needs.
Still other miscellaneous grants celebrate special events and aspects of Muscatine and its history, as well as organizations and projects that share a unique connection to the life and interests of Roy Carver. Additionally, occasional grants in this program area may serve to emphasize important natural resources throughout the local area and the upper Mississippi River region, with a focus on projects that help to guide children and youth toward a deeper understanding of, and respect for, the ecosystem and surrounding environment.
Illinois Arts Council Agency
Arts Service Organizations Grants
Grants to Arts Service Organizations (ASO) provide general operating support to established organizations that make a significant local, regional, or statewide impact on the quality of life in Illinois.
An arts service organization is defined as an organization that provides specialized services to the arts and cultural community. These organizations can be discipline, geographical, or culture-based, or can serve the entire arts community. ASOs are not arts producers or presenters but serve the arts making community. Services offered can include, but are not limited to, professional development and technical assistance such as marketing, legal and financial assistance, networking opportunities, educational forums and workshops, and printed materials including calendars, newsletters, and other publications.
Illinois Arts Council Agency
General Operating Support Grant
IACA General Operating Support Grants are offered to established not-for-profit organizations that make a significant local, regional, or statewide impact on the quality of life in Illinois. Grants recognize arts programing of high quality that is appropriate to and reflective of the communities served and that broaden opportunities for the public to participate in the arts.
Successful applicants demonstrate strong operations, stable management, ongoing assessment and evaluation, and a strong commitment to making artistic programs accessible and relevant to a diverse range of participants. Organizations must also show that their programs and activities have artistic, educational, and cultural value.
Illinois Arts Council Agency
Partners in Excellence
IACA Partners in Excellence Grants offer general operating support to established not-for-profit organizations that make a significant local, regional, or statewide impact on the quality of life in Illinois.
Recognizing that Illinois is the home of creative arts institutions of regional and national significance; the Illinois Arts Council Agency (IACA) has implemented the Partners in Excellence Program (PIE). The PIE Program provides general operating support to designated organizations of scale and significance in all regions of the state. The PIE Program criteria define the characteristics that distinguish PIE Program grantees and define the program as recognizing organizations that bring access to high standards of arts activities in diverse communities throughout Illinois. The criteria also recognize that access to arts activities and to the resources that support those activities varies widely in different regions of the state.
Illinois Arts Council Agency
NOTE: This is an open deadline program. Applications must be received no less than eight weeks before the project start date as identified in the application. Applications are reviewed in the order in which they are received and will be accepted until the funds are fully committed or by May 15, 2024.
Artstour & Live Music Program Description
Artstour & Live Music provides support to eligible Illinois not-for-profit organizations seeking to present Illinois performing artists, companies, or groups for performances, collaborations, or short residencies held in conjunction with performances.
Examples of programs:
- A library engages a storyteller to present stories during a children’s story festival.
- A school district brings in a theatre company to perform at the local high school. In addition, the company visits the elementary school to work with 3rd and 4th graders involved in the school’s upcoming theatre production.
- A theatre company collaborates with a folk musician in the creation and presentation of a new play.
- The local college brings a jazz orchestra to town to perform. The musicians also give a mini-performance at the local senior center.
- A dance company engages a classical music ensemble to provide live music for a performance.
Nordson Corporation Foundation
Nordson Foundation Giving Strategies
The geographic areas in which Nordson has major facilities determine the Nordson Foundation's giving priorities. Nordson continues to commit 5 percent of pretax domestic earnings for charitable purposes in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Ohio, Rhode Island, and Wisconsin. Within these geographic areas, granting priorities are driven by community needs. Although needs change quickly, our vision is long term. We pursue and support results-oriented opportunities that prepare individuals for full and equal participation in the economic and social mainstream. We believe these kinds of programs help improve the quality of life over the long term and produce stronger, more enlightened communities in which we live and work. We strive to fulfill these responsibilities in our communities through contributions to charitable activities with a focus on education. Other major giving categories that are supported are human welfare, civic affairs and arts and culture.
Nordson Foundation Values
In the spirit of our corporate founders, the Nordson Corporation Foundation continues to operate on the belief that business, as a corporate citizen, has a social responsibility to share its success with the communities where it operates and draws employees.
The Nordson Foundation is dedicated to improving our communities by supporting the continuum of education from birth to adulthood in the belief that education is the key for individuals to become self-sufficient, productive members of society.
To prepare individuals for economic independence, a variety of quality educational experiences are necessary. To be successful today, individuals not only need to master the basics, “reading, writing and arithmetic”, they must also know how to think critically and creatively. Strengthening the community’s human capital – through quality education – is crucial.
The Nordson Foundation offers support to non-profit organizations that cultivate educational curriculum and experiences that foster self-sufficiency, job readiness and goals to aspire to higher education. The Foundation is well aware of the fact that for non-profit organizations to remain viable they must receive operating support. With this in mind, Nordson Corporation Foundation does invest in general operating support.
As stewards of the Foundation assets, the directors feel strongly that the organizations that are supported by the Foundation be able to measure the effectiveness of their mission and programs. Quantitative and/or qualitative data allows for the Foundation to ensure that the organizations it supports are bringing about the desired outcomes in our communities.
Nordson Foundation Goals
The goals of the Nordson Corporation Foundation are to insure that:
- All children have access to and receive quality educational experiences from early childhood.
- All individuals have the opportunity to be self-sufficient members of society.
- There is a continuum of quality educational opportunities.
- Our communities are strengthened by the organizations we fund whether their focus is education, human welfare, civic or arts and culture.
Nordson Foundation Funding Strategy
Through its grant-making, the Foundation supports organizations that directly or indirectly seek to maximize success before, during and beyond the traditional classroom years. Grants will be reviewed and considered on the basis of their enrichment to the communities where our employees live and work. Organizations and programs receiving grants will be expected to identify relevant, measurable outcomes to demonstrate the effectiveness of their programs.
- Early Childhood Care and Education.
- Maximizing Student Success.
- Access to quality educational opportunities.
- Innovative programs.
- Partnerships/collaborations with school districts.
- Funding gaps not covered by public monies.
- Augmenting core curriculum.
- Exposure to programs that expand on traditional education.
- Workforce Preparation.
- Initial preparation for the world of work.
- Retraining for the new job market.
- Strengthening our communities.
- Promote prevention and lifestyle maintenance programs and activities.
- Promote crisis intervention.
- Promote life transition opportunities.
- Promote systemic change.
Arts and Culture:
- Actively seek to broaden the audience bases in Nordson communities.
- Support the visual and performing arts.
- Provide educational enrichment for students.
- Motivation for at-risk youth.
- Provide access to the arts for special needs audience.
- Promote greater understanding among people via the arts.
- Work to improve the physical or economic environment.
- Provide cultural or historical preservation.
- Strive to inform citizens and increase their participation in community improvement.
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