Final round of COVID-19 Response Grants awarded in DeKalb County

Response fund designates $124K in grants to 16 local organizations

SYCAMORE – The DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Fund advisory committee has awarded $124,166 in grants to 16 local charitable organizations.

This is the fifth and final round of the grants. 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,” Paul Callighan, DCCRF advisory committee member, said in a news release. “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.”

Organizations who received funding during this final round of grantmaking include:

• Adventure Works of DeKalb County – $6,750 to support the Adventure Works Sustainability Project

• Barb City Manor – $10,000 for COVID-19 recovery assistance

• Barb Food Mart – $6,770 for operational support and COVID-19 recovery assistance

• CASA – $13,156 in organizational support for CASA children and advocates

• DeKalb County Community Gardens – $8,640 to support the Community Food Needs Sustainability Plan

• Farmworker and Landscaper Advocacy Project – $11,000 in emergency and education support for low-income Latinx immigrant worker families

• Fox Valley Community Services – $8,000 to purchase new COVID-19 compliant tables and chairs

• Just Make It Happen – $1,675 to support the Let’s Dance COVID Relief Project

• Kishwaukee Family YMCA – $3,000 to support the Kishwaukee YMCA Mission Member Campaign

• KVAL – $1,675 in organizational operational support

• Network of Nations – $5,000 for the Network of Nations Intercultural Market Food Pantry

• Preservation of Egyptian Theatre Inc. – $7,500 for operational assistance to the Egyptian Theatre

• Safe Passage – $15,000 to support hotel costs for clients seeking a safe place

• The Salvation Army – $10,000 in utility and financial assistance for emergency housing

• Voluntary Action Center – $11,000 in assistance for congregate meal sites and the Meals on Wheels program

• Walcamp Outdoor Ministries – $5,000 in operational support for June COVID-19 Response

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.

“It was important as funders that we all work together to support essential nonprofits during the pandemic.” Tom Matya, DCCRF advisory committee member, said in the release. “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 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.

If and when the need arises, the DeKalb County COVID-19 Response Fund will re-open for donations and grants. For questions, contact Dan Templin, Community Foundation executive director, at or 815-748-5383.