The DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Fund advisory committee (DCCRF) is pleased to announce their fifth and final round of grantmaking results. Earlier this month, the committee awarded $124,166 in DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Grants to 16 local charitable organizations. Since April 2020, the Fund has made 115 grants totaling $729,135 to assist 55 organizations serving DeKalb County.
“There was a clear transition in our initial grants,” said Paul Callighan, DCCRF advisory committee member (Kishwaukee United Way representative). “We went from funding emergency supplies and protective equipment to supporting more permanent service-oriented systems in this final grant cycle. Through these grant discussions, I saw the power of collaboration by funders and the diversity of committee members. Together, we made a positive impact to help those in need despite the obstacles faced by this pandemic.”
Funding for this grant program was made possible by donations of all sizes to the DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Fund. The distribution of grants went primarily to nonprofit organizations serving DeKalb County’s most vulnerable populations. Funding focused on basic human needs, including emergency food, basic supplies, interim housing and shelter, primary health care services, utility and financial aid, care for children and other vulnerable populations, and supported nonprofit organizations for operating assistance. Thank you to the many generous donors who contributed!
“It was important as funders that we all work together to support essential nonprofits during the pandemic.” said Tom Matya, DCCRF advisory committee member (Douglas C. and Lynn M. Roberts Family Foundation). “Working together made it more efficient for both funders and nonprofits. A simple application and approval process allowed us to expedite funding to address local needs. The advisory committee was a rewarding group to work with!”
A few examples of impact from the Fund include a $9,500 grant in April 2020 to the DeKalb County Health Department. This grant came at the forefront of the pandemic when ample supplies of PPE and other safety equipment were a must. With dollars in hand, the Health Department quickly secured needed equipment for their facilities.
Another example of grant impact came in the way of food security and support for children. The Fox Valley Family YMCA stepped in to begin serving dinners to families in the community. A $3,000 grant provided the YMCA with funding to purchase food to start the Emergency Child Care program. Over the next several months, the YCMA served daily meals and offered emergency daycare to children.
The DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Fund was created in March 2020 in collaboration with various local funding partners to be a depository for contributions. The funding partners formed the DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Fund advisory committee. The committee included representatives from the DeKalb County Community Foundation, Kishwaukee United Way, Douglas C. & Lynn M. Roberts Family Foundation, DeKalb County Community Mental Health Board, IDEAL Foundation, Horizons Unlimited Foundation, and the DeKalb County Nonprofit Partnership (DCNP).
“The process we created was efficient and effective,” said Connie Holmes, DCCRF advisory committee member (IDEAL INDUSTRIES Foundation). “It allowed us to respond quickly to review and analyze the many grant requests and provide relief funding to as many organizations as possible. The IDEAL INDUSTRIES Foundation was honored to participate in this advisory committee.”
If and when the need arises, the DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Fund will re-open for donations and grants. For questions, please contact Dan Templin, Community Foundation Executive Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 815-748-5383.