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Excellent Emerging Organization Award

Grant to an Illinois Nonprofit for Capacity Building
to Improve Services and Efficiency in the Chicago Area

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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North Park University - Axelson Center for Nonprofit Management

Deadline Date:

04/13/18 11:59 PM CST


Request a Grant Writer

A grant of up to $5,000 and an in-kind grant valued at over $25,000 to an Illinois nonprofit organization for quality programs or services that benefit the residents of Chicago and the surrounding communities. Eligible regions include the following Counties: Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will. The Excellent Emerging Organization Award aims to strengthen the capacity of the winning organization to improve services and efficiency.

The Excellent Emerging Organization Award was created to honor up-and-coming organizations whose strength is apparent—even in the early stages of existence. The Foundation is looking for organizations that display sound management practices as well as innovation in programming and leadership capabilities. The Foundation respects that, as an emerging organization, the organization may not have all the policies and procedures in place, but demonstrating a commitment to excellence and learning is critical.

The quality and completeness of the application is essential as it will serve as the primary basis for assessment. The quality of how the organization expresses it story is critical in the Foundation's decision.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 132119

Number of Grants:

There will be one winner announced at the Axelson Center’s conference.

Estimated Size of Grant:

The selected nonprofit will receive a capacity-building package valued at over $25,000 and a $5,000 cash award. After an initial in-depth organizational assessment by the Executive Service Corps, a capacity building package will be customized to best meet the winning organization’s needs.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

In order to be considered for the award, an applicant organization:
- Must be a 501(c)3 organization
- Must have a primary mission focus that benefits Chicago and/or its surrounding communities (includes Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will County)
- Must be in existence for 10 years or less
- Must have an annual budget that does not exceed $750,000
- Must have 10 or fewer full-time staff members

Pre-Application Information:

Complete and submit the application by 11:59 p.m. CST on April 13, 2018. Please include all required attachments.

Applicants will receive a confirmation email upon submission of the application. If an applicant does not receive a confirmation email, the Foundation has not received the application materials.

Initial applications will be reviewed by the award committee and up to 3 organizations will be chosen as finalists for an in-person presentation with the committee. Qualifying finalist organizations will be notified in early May 2018.

Finalist organizations will have scheduled interviews with the awards committee in mid-June.

All finalist organizations and the award winner will be announced at the Axelson Center’s conference on October 19, 2018. The winner will not be notified in advance.

Eligible organizations are selected on an annual basis by an award committee comprised of Chicago-area nonprofit and community leaders. The winning organization is recognized at the Axelson Center’s conference.

For questions about the application or process, please email or call the Axelson Center. The Axelson Center will respond to the inquiry within two business days.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Online application:

Phone: 773-244-6284

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Illinois: Chicago-area including Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties