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New year offers new grants in Gruny County

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014 5:30 a.m. CST

MORRIS – With a new year comes a new grant cycle at the Community Foundation of Grundy County.

The Community Foundation of Grundy County has two major ways of grant making: through our donor advised funds and through our unrestricted grant fund. Donors who have set up funds with the foundation are able to provide grants to 501c3 organizations of their choice.

Organizations do not have to apply for these funds as they are given at the donor’s discretion and the organizations do not have to benefit Grundy County. Our unrestricted grant fund on the other hand serves a different purpose.

In order to receive unrestricted grant funds, organizations must complete a grant application, which is reviewed by our Grants and Programs Committee. Monies from the unrestricted grant fund must go to 501c3 organizations who serve Grundy County. The foundation does not typically award funds for individuals, scholarships, religious denominations, disease-specific organizations or for operational budgets.

I am happy to report that because of generous donors, the Community Foundation was able to increase our unrestricted grants budget for 2014 to $30,000.

Our grant cycle is January through December and grants are awarded until the fund is exhausted. Grant requests typically cannot exceed $5,000. Organizations interested in applying for a grant must provide us with a description of their project including the benefits it would have on Grundy County, the proposed budget and other funding sources. Organizations also must have proof of the organization’s charitable status.

In addition, organizations must provide the Community Foundation with photographs or copies of public relations around the project. Monies granted to an organization must be used for the purpose approved of by the Community Foundation. The Grants and Programs Committee meets the first Wednesday of each month; however, we ask that applicants submit their applications one week prior to that meeting.

In 2013, the Community Foundation was happy to award grants from our unrestricted fund to: Morris Mobile Meals, Grundy County Historical Society, the Village of Mazon, Guardian Angel Home and each of the school districts in Grundy County.

A portion of our unrestricted grant dollars also goes toward a program called “Who Wants to Be a Grant Maker.” Each month at the Grundy County Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s “Business After Hours” event, the foundation has a drawing for a $100 grant to the charity of the winner’s choice.

In 2013, the “who wants to be a grant maker” program provided a $100 grant to the following nonprofits: Morris Hospital Foundation, We Care of Grundy County, Good Shepherd Manor, Grundy County Volunteer Hospice, ATI Foundation, First Presbyterian Church, Joliet Junior College Foundation, Operation Care Package, Grundy Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity and United Way of Grundy County.

If your organization is interested in obtaining information about applying for a grant through the Community Foundation of Grundy County in 2014, contact Devan at 815-941-0852 or devan@cfgrundycounty.com.

Instructions for assembling and submitting a grant application packet also are available on our website www.cfgrundycounty.com.

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