Neighborhood Grants Deadline Extended

The deadline to apply for the 2021 Neighborhood Grants cycle has been extended to Monday, April 19.

NW HomeStart and the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois (CFNIL) are accepting applications for the Neighborhood Grants Program until 5 p.m. on Monday, April 19. This program is open to neighborhood-based groups and nonprofit organizations operating in Boone, Ogle, Stephenson, and Winnebago Counties. 

The Neighborhood Grants Program funds neighborhood-focused and resident-led projects, including but not limited to beautification, crime prevention, surveys, clean ups, newsletters, organizing, reforestation, and resident-focused education. The maximum award from the Neighborhood Grants Program is $2,500. Awards will be announced in April 2021.

Applications must be submitted through CFNIL’s online grants application portal by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 5, 2021. HomeStart administers the Neighborhood Grants Program, including awarding the grant funds. To learn more about the program, view grant guidelines, and start your application, visit:

Last year’s recipients included: Jeremiah Development, SecondFirst Church, Project 1013, Churchill’s Grove, Inc, Soar Assembly, Rock House Kids, Loves Park Pulse, Winnebago Community Historical Society, Rockford Park District Foundation, Rock Valley College, and Ethnic Village Neighborhood.  

CFNIL has operated a neighborhood grants program since 1995, distributing more than $750,000 to build better neighborhoods in Rockford and beyond. This is the fifth year CFNIL and HomeStart are collaborating to better extend the opportunity to the four-county region. 

Through this partnership, HomeStart will also offer the opportunity for a team to attend the NeighborWorks Community Leadership Institute this fall. This event is geared toward citizens who are seeking to learn about neighborhood improvement strategies that can be put into practice in their own communities. Visit to learn more about the NeighborWorks Community Leadership Institute. 

CFNIL and HomeStart staff hosted an informative webinar about the 2021 Neighborhood Grants cycle in mid-February. Here is the recording of that webinar!