Application Process

The application cycle for 2021 grants runs from January 15th to May 1st.

Beneficiary Criteria

We target smaller organizations where we believe our gifts can have the most impact. The operating budget of these organizations is typically $1-3M. With an average grant of $200,000 per beneficiary, Invest For Kids awards play a significant role in helping the most promising organizations achieve their goals. Our focus is on education, mentoring, enrichment programs, social services, healthcare, and scholarship funding. Organizations are eligible for grants if they (1) serve Chicago area youth in need; (2) have operating budgets between $1-3 million; and (3) have been in existence for 3 years.

Selection Process

Our diligence efforts are thorough and focused on a “hands on” understanding of each organization we consider. We look for quality programming, strong leadership, a dedicated board, and measurable results.

Our process entails initial screening of applications to narrow the applicant pool. We then conduct on site visits and thorough interviews with the organizations’ leadership followed by reference and fact checking to ultimately determine our annual recipients. Since 2009, we have reviewed over 550 organizations and conducted over 200 due diligence meetings.

Key Dates

The Application cycle runs from January 15th – May 1st.

Grants will be announced on or before August 31st.


For questions regarding applications, please contact Barbara Wolf, Director of Giving: