Rotary Club of Joliet seeking local nonprofits in need of funds for capital projects

All projects must be sponsored by a member of the Rotary Club of Joliet.

Construction is nearing completion on the new wing of the Joliet Area Community Hospice on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Joliet, Ill.

Each year Rotary Club of Joliet uses proceeds from its annual Joliet Rotary Raffle fundraising event to help a local nonprofit with a capital campaign.

This year, Rotary Club of Joliet has up to $30,000 it wishes to donate, according to Mary Sheehan, president. But interested nonprofits must find a member of the Rotary Club of Joliet sponsor them before submitting applications – and the deadline to do both March 31, she said.

Fortunately, that shouldn’t be difficult to do.

Sheehan said board members are listed on the club’s website. Interested nonprofits may contact any of them to connect them with a club member.

“We will find the right sponsor for them,” Sheehan said. “There are 120 of us [members].”

Sheehan said the Rotary Club of Joliet donated raffle proceeds to the former Joliet Area Community Hospice (now called Lightways Hospice and Serious Illness Care) when it opened its first in-patient unit.

Other nonprofits that received raffle proceeds through the years include Will County Habit for Humanity, the Greater Joliet Area YMCA, the Boys and Girls Club in Joliet and Guardian Angel Community Services in Joliet Sheehan said.

Ines Kutlesa, chief executive officer of Guardian Angel Community Services, said previous raffle proceeds helped renovate the playground at a previous location of Guardian Angel.

“It meant so much to us that children and their families through all the various programs could enjoy a beautiful and safe environment,” Kutlesa said.

Sheehan said the Rotary Club of Joliet has a committee that reviews all the applications, selects three organizations to present their need to the entire club and then Rotary votes on one to receive the money.

That’s why Sheehan wants local nonprofits who need funds for a capital project to apply.

“But it has to be for a capital project,” Sheehan said. “We want it to be a sustaining program, something that will carry on and hold on for years to come.”

“We want it to be a sustaining program, something that will carry on and hold on for years to come.”

—  Mary Sheehan, president, Rotary Club of Joliet

Sheehan said the next raffle kicks off in July. Members will sell raffle tickets for $100 each. The winning ticket is pulled in September and the winner receives $10,000. The whole point of the raffle is to benefit the community.

“People are really excited to buy the tickets when they know it’s going back to the community,” Sheehan said.

For applications, to contact a board member and for more information, visit