$75,000 to Grundy agencies from ICRF

Grundy County residents in need will benefit from a recent grant from the Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund.  On June 3, 2020, the Community Foundation of Grundy County and the United Way of Grundy County announced that 17 nonprofits and agencies will receive a portion of the $75,000 grant from the ICRF.

Below are the programs funded by this grant as well as information for how to apply (if applicable).  Some grants are open for the public to apply; other grants are for an agency’s existing client or for residents in a specific town/township only:

Services available to the public to apply:

Diapers and Formula are being provided by Grundy County Heroes & Helpers.  “Our mission is to help children and families in need in Grundy County because we truly believe that it does take a village to raise a child.  There are times in all of our lives that a little extra support makes a difference in being able to give our children the best we can. We are so appreciative of the Community Foundation for being a part of our village in order to provide much needed diapers and formula to families in Grundy County.  As many of our families are currently struggling with transportation, our team will be providing porch drop offs.”  Residents can contact Timberlie Jahn at 626-437-6036 to apply.

Domestic Violence response and services are provided by Breaking Away.  “These funds will be used to help educate the public on the services of Breaking Away, especially during these uncertain times with COVID 19 and the shelter at home order.  A lot of domestic violence victims are afraid to “break away” from their abuser, as they are told they can’t survive without the abuser.  At Breaking Away, we provide emergency shelter for victims and their children, and help them move on to the next steps to finally break away forever.  During the COVID 19 crisis, domestic violence has been on the rise.  We want the citizens of Grundy County to know that there is help for domestic violence, both now, and especially during the COVID 19 crisis.  Breaking away will use educational radio commercials on WCSJ 103.1FM to let listeners know where they can go if help is needed.”  If you, or someone you know, needs this service, they can call the Grundy County States Attorney’s Office at 815.941.3278, or go to your nearest police department. 

Rent & mortgage assistance is provided by We Care of Grundy County.  “We truly appreciate being awarded these funds. This gives us the opportunity to help more people in our community who are struggling with their rent or mortgage because of the COVID 19 pandemic. We have already seen an increase in need of this service, so this grant is very timely.”  To apply for rent or mortgage assistance, call We Care at  815-942-6389 ext 3.

Mobile food pantries are provided by Reclaim3d.  Grundy resident John M said, “”The Reclaimed mobile food pantry has blessed my family whenever we are down on our luck. We thank God that this organization will assist anyone in need, especially right now while work is so slow.”  Please click here to follow Reclaim3d’s website for the next mobile food pantry date.

Utilities (gas and electric) assistance is provided by Kendall-Grundy Community Action Agency.  Please call 815-941-3262 to apply.

Direct financial assistance for Grundy County’s Latino residents is provided by Farmworker and Landscape Advocacy Project.  “I want to sincerely thank you so very much for this grant opportunity and share with you that after I received the email informing me of the grant I asked my staff to call some of the most in need people who are Grundy County residents to let them know that we are going to help them with your support. Some people called us back crying with happy tears after receiving the great news. I am sure you do know how much this help means to them!”  To apply, please contact [email protected] or text (815) 909-0362.

Grants to organizations specifically for their existing clients or geographic residents:

General Assistance funding is available through Mazon Township for low income residents of Mazon Township.  “These funds will be utilized to assist the residents of the Mazon Township with rent, mortgage and utility assistance.  The last few months have been very difficult for many in the area and this grant will help to provide additional assistance for our residents.”  Residents of the Mazon Township experiencing financial hardships may complete an application for assistance by calling (815) 448-2355.

Residents of Narvick House, a program of Illinois Valley Industries, received a grant for PPE and cleaning supplies.  “Illinois Valley Industries has served adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities for over 50 years through job readiness activities, employment and independent living supports.  As a grateful recipient of grant funds from the Illinois COVID Response Fund, IVI will purchase cleaning supplies recognized by the EPA to combat COVID 19 for 14 client apartment. In addition to cleaning supplies, we can supply 23 clients with personal protective equipment such as masks (and mask alternatives for accommodations needed) and sanitizer.  This virus has affected everyone, causing fear and uncertainty especially for clients we serve. Their limited understanding of current events combined with personal fears have left some with concerns for their safety in their homes as staff provide in person supports and the fear of what will happen when they leave the confines of home or if someone in their apartment complex became ill with COVID 19.  Purchasing needed supplies for their immediate living space, their social space and for their personal protection provides a level of safety and security while allowing them to take control of their health, safety and well-being while maintaining their independence.”

Residents of Saratoga Tower will receive additional items for their food pantry as a result of this grant.  “Using the elevator or the narrow hallways and stairwells at Saratoga Tower can make social distancing nearly impossible.  The simple act of going to the grocery store becomes a potentially life threatening event for the low income seniors and residents with disabilities who live in the building, many of whom have significant underlying health conditions.  Under these conditions the resident operated pantry on the first floor of the building has become a vital resource for food and other supplies.  We are so grateful and express our sincere appreciation to every single person who has helped make these important dollars available.”

Grundy County Veterans Assistance Commission received a grant to provide financial support for veterans due to pandemic not otherwise covered by the VA.  “The Grundy County Veterans Assistance Commission is very grateful for the ICRF grant. These funds will be used to help veterans with additional needs that our existing program cannot. As a result of the COVID health emergency every program and service has been slowed down due to work restrictions and social distancing, this puts an additional strain on veterans as they attempt to cope with an already difficult situation. Even little things like gas cards and help with a cell phone bill make a difference.”  The Grundy County VAC assists veterans with federal, state and local veterans benefits. One of the local benefits is a financial assistance program for honorably discharged veterans and their families. The Grundy County VAC uses their own funds to meet essential needs and works with a variety of other programs to offer additional assistance when possible. The GCVAC can be reached at 815-941-3152 or [email protected].

Three municipalities in Grundy County received grants to help their residents pay their water, garbage, and sewer bills.

Village of Minooka – “The events of the past months have created challenges for our community.  With the state’s shelter in place order, many of our residents have been laid off from their jobs or had their hours reduced.  The Village has waived our late fees on utility bills and have postponed shutting of water service due to nonpayment, but the receipt of this $10,000 Illinois COVID Relief Fund Grant allows us to do more.  The Village will work directly with our residents to assist them in paying their outstanding water bills.  The Village appreciates the work done by our community partners, the Community Foundation and the United Way.” Residents can request assistance by emailing the Village at [email protected].  They can provide their name, address and summarize how COVID 19 has effected their ability to pay their outstanding utility bill (Ex. Loss of employment or reduction of hours).  They can call the Village’s main phone number 815.467.2151 with questions.   

Village of Coal City – “We are hoping to utilize these funds for qualified COVD-19 relief recipients.  As our utility billing department representatives speak with our residents, they will be working to identify which individuals have been affected by COVID-19 and make them aware Coal City may utilize these funds to offset their overdue utility bill.  Currently, the Village is experiencing record high overdue utility billing because the regular course of action to ensure timely payment through the methods of shutting off utility service for delinquency and charging late fees should the payments not arrive in a timely manner have been postponed due to the existence of COVID-19 restrictions.  It has been observed there are approximately 3% of the total outstanding utility users who have not regularly received late notifications regarding their utility payments.  As Coal City’s utility billing representatives inquire as to the reasoning behind the current delinquency during conversations with our residents, the COVID-19 Relief funding provided by the Grundy Community Foundation will be utilized to relieve them of some of or all of the outstanding burden.  Total assistance will depend upon the total relief requested; Coal City only has $3,500 of relief to appropriate to qualified accounts.  The utility billing department is working earnestly to identify possible qualified accounts and will then speak with residents should they inquire.”  Questions as to whether a Coal City resident may utilize this funding, should be directed to Jacque at Village Hall at 815-634-8608.  The best means of communication during COVID-19 limitations is to call Village Hall since the communal area is closed to residents throughout the regular hours of business for the health and safety of the employees and Coal City residents.

Village of Mazon – Mazon residents can contact Kim Marques at [email protected].

Easterseals Jump Start received a grant to provide PPE care packages to their home-visiting families.  “Our Jump Start Families, in receiving supplies to provide personal protective equipment through the grant, can now divert funds to other crucial needs like food, rent, and bills.  Anything that we can do to help support families with young children during this pandemic helps to reduce family stress levels, which lowers negative outcomes of child neglect and abuse”.  Families wanting to learn more about the Jump Start home-visiting program can contact Easterseals at 815.927.5492.

Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity received a grant to provide mortgage assistance for existing Habitat homeowners.  “Through this grant, Habitat is able to throw families a life raft during a very difficult time. Our homeowners have worked hard to get to the place where they could purchase and maintain their own homes. Lost jobs or reduced hours due to Covid have created significant hurdles, causing financial and emotional stress. The funds will bless our nine current mortgage holders with a partial mortgage payment, temporarily relieving a major concern while freeing up funds in their family’s budget and showing support when it’s needed most.”  Those wanting to learn more about Grundy-Three Rivers Habitat for Humanity can call Elena Cabral at 815-942-1452.

The Grundy County Health Department received a grant to provide un-funded COVID-related needs for their clients.  To learn more about services at the Grundy County Health Department, please call (815) 941-3404.

Joliet Area Community Hospice received a grant to provide PPE for their hospice home.  Click here to view their website.


To learn more about grants from the Community Foundation of Grundy County, please call 815-941-0852 or email [email protected].