How We Work: Our Grants
We are guided by the belief that all individuals should have access to the resources they need to thrive.
To help enable our vision, we partner and invest in organizations and leaders who have the knowledge, skill, and capacity to bring about significant change in their communities.
In Englewood and Little Village, the Foundation strengthens avenues to career pathways that lead to quality jobs in industries that are growing, pay well, and offer the greatest promise for economic mobility, while helping entrepreneurs access coaching and operating capital to fuel the growth of their businesses.
All children, birth to age 5, having access to quality early education programs and start school Kindergarten-ready, is the focus of the Foundation’s early childhood investments.
The Foundation invests in solutions-oriented investigative reporting and advocacy efforts that mobilizes government, citizen, and private sector actions to achieve public institutions that are more inclusive, transparent, and accountable to the communities they serve.
Foundation investments aim to interrupt violence with credible messengers, divert high risk individuals to rehabilitation programs and support programs, provide social and behavioral health services, connect high risk individuals with jobs and economic opportunity, and ensure people leaving incarceration have access to stable housing, employment, and social support services.
In support of veterans and their families, the Foundation seeks to develop pathways to great jobs and solid careers, build engagement with available state and federal benefits and resources, make college more accessible, and support mental health treatment programs.
We invest in people and organizations across Chicago and Illinois to develop educated, informed, and engaged communities.
Englewood is a Foundation place-based community partner made up of residents who care deeply about the community. Since its early history, Greater Englewood has been a hub of commerce and transportation. After a period of decline, receding real estate markets and disinvestment, Englewood went through a period of introspection to redefine its identity. Englewood is at an important point in history, with major financial investments in new projects coming up out of the ground, which can help establish a sustainable community, reflective of the community’s positive activism and dedication.
As the principal port-of-entry for Mexican immigrants to the Midwest, Little Village is a vibrant, heavily-populated neighborhood on Chicago’s west side that is 93 percent Latino. As a place-based Foundation partner, “La Villita” retains a mix of multiple generations of Mexican-Americans living, working, and shopping together which creates a unique culture blending traditions brought from Mexico with new traditions unique to Chicago. The distinct cultural heritage impacts the culture, institutions, systems relationships, political representation, and economy of the community. It’s through these assets that Little Village remains one of Chicago’s strongest neighborhoods.
United Way Neighborhood Network
Together with the McCormick Foundation, the United Way of Metropolitan Chicago identified 10 local communities where neighborhood nonprofits, businesses, government, and civic partners throughout the community work under formal agreements to align programs and services around a common agenda. This Neighborhood Network model aligns economic opportunity with human services, and delivers training, funding, resources and knowledge to build strength and heighten possibilities for all residents.