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Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, the LGBTQ Community Fund provided its largest annual grant making total in 2020, awarding $813,000 in total grant dollars. Of that amount, $492,500 went to COVID-19 response. (The full list of spring 2020 community grants can be found here.)

The Fund’s COVID-19 response grants went towards supporting the immediate needs of the LGBTQ+ community in the Chicago region, as well as organizations providing services to the community. Response dollars were also provided for general operating support.

2020 COVID-19 Response Grant Awards: Round 1 ($210,000 total)

  • 360 Youth Services ($17,500): To help close a $106,000 funding gap to provide 4 apartments (8 beds) of Transitional Housing for LGBTQ youth.
  • Adler University: ($17,500): To support a new tele-behavioral health program, which will utilize technology to increase access to mental health care for all medically underserved populations.
  • AIDS Foundation of Chicago ($25,000): To support increased capacity for emergency financial assistance, provide critical case management and housing services, and respond to emerging client needs.
  • Association of Latino Men for Actions ($12,500): For general operating support for continued engagement and advocacy for the Latinx LGBTQ community, via creative virtual methodologies.
  • Center for Disability and Elder Law, Inc. ($15,000): To support “Proud to Thrive” program outreach to the LGBTQ community and provide housing and estate planning legal services necessitated by the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Center on Halsted: ($25,000): For general operating support and to continue work to advance community and secure the health and wellbeing of the LGBTQ people of the Chicago region.
  • Chicago High School for the Arts ($17,500): For general operating support of Chicago’s first public high school dedicated to the arts.
  • Equality Illinois Institute ($10,000): For general operating support for an array of organization-wide initiatives that meet the needs of the LGBTQ community.
  • Lorde, Rustin & Bates, Inc. ($20,000): For general operating support so the agency can continue to provide its organizational development services.
  • Planned Parenthood of Illinois ($17,500): For general operating support to provide comprehensive, inclusive sexual and reproductive health care to patients at the organization’s 18 health centers.
  • Sisters in Cinema ($10,000): For general operating support and to hire a part-time staff member, and to develop the “Black Lesbian Writers’ Room” as a virtual program.
  • Transformative Justice Law Project of Illinois ($12,500): To support increased services for Black and Indigenous transgender people of color in the Chicago region.
  • Upswing Advocates, Inc. ($10,000): For general operating support to continue offering LGBTQ2IA-focused trainings on a sliding scale, and to provide anti-racism trainings and equity audits.

2020 COVID-19 Response Grant Awards: Round 2* ($282,500 total)

  • About Face Theater ($10,000): For general operating support to advance organizational goals of employing 35 production artists and 10 teaching artists, as well as increasing reach via online programs.
  • AgeOptions, Inc. ($17,500): To support expansion of direct service programming to LGBT+ older adults and increased outreach to LGBT+ older adults and caregivers.
  • Brave Space Alliance ($20,000): To support improving logistics and transportation for operations at four food pantries, which have served 45,000+ people on the South and West sides.
  • Chicago House ($15,000): For general operating support to counter budget shortfalls, as well as the emergent needs of 3,000+ individuals and families impacted by COVID-19.
  • Housing Opportunities & Maintenance for the Elderly Inc. ($17,500): To support redesigning the Nathalie Salmon House, a multi-purpose, flexibly divided healing and arts space.
  • Howard Brown Center ($25,000): To support operation of six COVID-19 community care stations providing free testing across Chicago, as well as primary care telehealth and basic needs programming.
  • Leather Archives and Museum, Inc. ($7,500): For general operating support to minimize budget deficit, support current staff, and expand digital presence.
  • Legal Council for Health Justice ($17,500): For general operating support for staff providing high quality legal assistance, legal advocacy, and health care education during the pandemic.
  • McDermott Center ($17.500): For general operating support and to provide behavioral health care to LGBTQ+ clients during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Night Ministry ($17,500): For general operating support of The Crib, an emergency overnight shelter program for up to 21 young adults between the ages of 18-24.
  • Public Health Institute of Metropolitan Chicago ($17,500): For general operating support for infrastructure and systems re-design, investment in organizational and staff capacity, and program and service adaptations for the virtual and remote environment.
  • Puerto Rican Cultural Center ($10,000): For general operating for COVID-specific initiatives like assisting with emergency rental and mortgage applications and contract tracing efforts.
  • Roger Baldwin Foundation of the ACLU, Inc. ($17,500): For general operating support and to offset costs related to starting new litigation, conducting know-your-rights trainings, and community outreach.
  • Sit Hub / Chicago Therapy Collective ($15,000): For general operating support and to develop and implement multi-stakeholder membership model and work-centered nonprofit infrastructure.
  • Test Positive Awareness Network ($20,000): To support operations of the Tea Room, TPAN’s drop-in center for mostly LGBT young adults ages 18-29.
  • Youth Empowerment Performance Project ($17,500): For general operating to pay part-time staff, purchase supplies to keep staff safe, and for operations of the Distribution Center.
  • Youth Services of Glenview – Northbrook ($20,000): For general operating support for programming that meets the unique needs of LGBTQ+ youth and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 *Invite only.