The Evanston Community Foundation is seeking proposals for capacity-building and program grants.

Proposals will be accepted through midnight of Jan. 27.

Last year’s responsive grant cycle awarded $240,850 in grants to 29 organizations and programs, setting a record for the greatest number of grants and largest amount awarded by ECF in a single grant cycle.

The maximum grant size awarded is $20,000; the average 2013 grant size awarded was $8,000.

Responsive grants fund capacity-building efforts and program or collaborative project grants in arts and culture, basic human needs, community development, early childhood education/early learning, education, environment, family support/counseling, health, housing, seniors, workforce development, or youth.

While the Foundation is known for its work in early childhood education, it also holds funds dedicated to organizations that serve women and girls, boys, the environment and the arts.

Evanston Community Foundation President and CEO Sara Schastok said, “Our board has expressed special interest this year in capacity-building grants to strengthen the ability of organizations to fulfill their mission.”

Schastok added, “Evanston Community Foundation also invites proposals furthering the goals of Evanston 150, a community-wide initiative that identified 10 visionary ideas for Evanston’s future in celebration of Evanston’s 150th anniversary.” 

To qualify for grants, organizations must be a 501(c)3, school or government entity, or have a fiscal sponsor that qualifies as a nonprofit 501(c)3, and provide services to the Evanston community and address issues, concerns or opportunities in the Evanston community.

Proposals must be submitted online. More information is available online or by contacting Program Officer Rebecca Cacayuran at or 847-492-0990.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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