From the Community Foundation of Kankakee River Valley and United Way of Kankakee & Iroquois Counties
KANKAKEE, IL (Thursday, April 9, 2020) – The Kankakee and Iroquois Counties COVID-19 Community Response Fund announced today it has distributed more than $250,000 to 16 organizations serving Kankakee and Iroquois counties.
The Fund established by the United Way of Kankakee and Iroquois Counties and the Community Foundation of Kankakee River Valley also announced it has raised more than $320,000 since its launch in late March, including a $250,000 grant from the Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund.
“As a locally-based community foundation and United Way, we regularly interact with the key front-line organizations providing round-the-clock services to our most vulnerable citizens,” said Nicole Smolkovich, Executive Director of the Community Foundation of Kankakee River Valley. “This is an all-hands-on-deck moment. We greatly appreciate not only the trust and confidence of our local donors and grantee partners, but also being entrusted with a grant from the Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund to help address this unprecedented crisis.”
The Kankakee and Iroquois Counties COVID-19 Community Response Fund provides flexible funding to local organizations to supply essential resources to the individuals and households most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This week marks the first round of grants from the fund. There will be additional rounds of funding in the coming weeks aimed at addressing needs as they evolve.
“We want to ensure that we can get resources out to people immediately and also think about the mid- to long-term impact on families who are missing paychecks or have children out of school without child care; on our homeless population; on the elderly who can’t get out to get food; on the most vulnerable, who can’t withstand the shock of missing a paycheck,” said Kerstin Rust, Executive Director of United Way of Kankakee & Iroquois Counties.
More than one-third of Kankakee and Iroquois households could not afford basic needs prior to the pandemic. The need for additional services and support will likely persist for months to come as the number of cases rise and the ripple effects of the virus are felt throughout our economy and health care system.
The initial grant recipients from the fund are:
- Agape Community Outreach Mission, Inc.
- Bourbonnais Elementary School District 53
- The Bread Basket
- Catholic Charities Diocese of Joliet
- Compassionate Ministries Center of Hope
- Fortitude Community Outreach
- Harbor House
- Helen Wheeler Center
- Iroquois County Public Health Department
- Kankakee Area YMCA
- Kankakee County Community Services Inc.
- Kankakee School District 111
- Nexus Indian Oaks Family Healing
- Nexus Onarga Academy
- The Salvation Army
- Volunteer Services of Iroquois County
Donations can be made with a credit or debit card by visiting myunitedway.org or cfkrv.org. Checks can also be mailed and made to: The Community Foundation of Kankakee River Valley, 701 S. Harrison Ave., Kankakee, IL 60901. Please reference “COVID-19 Fund.”
Click for more about Kankakee County COVID-19 Response & Recovery.