Volunteer with CFNIL

Community Investment, Community Driven. 

Advisors, CFNIL's term for volunteers, are an essential part of CFNIL's work. Scholarship Advisors review and recommend recipients for every CFNIL scholarship fund. Grant Advisors review grant proposals and make allocation recommendations for available grant dollars from CFNIL's Community Grants Program

All prospective advisors are asked to attend an in-person Advisor Recruitment session to learn more about the Community Foundation and what their role will entail. While much of the work of an advisor is completed at home, all advisors also participate in in-person* committee meetings to discuss and compare the applications they have reviewed. As a result of these requirements and the need for familiarity with the communities of northern Illinois, all advisors must be current residents of Boone, Ogle, Stephenson, or Winnebago County. Occasional exceptions may be made at staff discretion for non-resident scholarship fund representatives.

Scholarship Advisors recommend recipients for scholarship funds by reviewing and scoring applications based on a set of criteria established by the fund’s donor. Advisors typically commit 15-20 hours to the scholarship process in the spring.

PROCESS:

  1. Attend an introductory “Advisor Recruitment” meeting to learn more about CFNIL and the scholarship program.
  2. Review and score batch of applications online.
  3. Attend one in-person meeting to discuss scores with small committee and recommend recipients.

IMPORTANT DATES FOR SCHOLARSHIP ADVISORS

Advisor Recruitment Meeting: January 23, 2023
Scholarship Application Closes: February 1, 2023
Scholarship Advisor Trainings: Mid-February, 2023
Selection Committee Meetings: March 22-23 OR April 4-5, 2023
Scholarship Recipients Announced: May 1, 2023
Advisor Recruitment Meeting: May 1, 2023
Scholarship Award Night:  June 15, 2023
Advisor Recruitment Meeting September 7, 2023
Scholarship Application Opens: December 1, 2023
Community Scholarship Fair: December 5, 2023

Login to Scholarship Advisor Portal

Grant Advisors review and assess grant requests and recommend grant awards for proposals submitted through the Community Grants Program. Advisors typically commit 15-20 hours to the grants process in the fall.

PROCESS:

  1. Attend an introductory “Advisor Recruitment” meeting to learn more about CFNIL and the Community Grants program.
  2. Assigned to a grant focus area committee.
  3. Review and score batch of applications online.
  4. Attend one in-person meeting to discuss applications with committee and recommend recipients.

IMPORTANT DATES FOR GRANT ADVISORS

Advisor Recruitment Meeting: January 23, 2023
Advisor Recruitment Meeting: May 1, 2023
Community Grants Application Opens: June 20, 2023
Community Grants Application Closes:  August 15, 2023
Advisor Recruitment Meeting:  September 7, 2023
Grant Advisor Trainings: Mid-September 2023
Applications Open for Review:  September 
Grant Committee Review Meetings: October 2023
Board Approves Recommendations: Mid-November, 2023

Login to Grant Advisor Portal

Questions about being a Scholarship Advisor? Contact Heather!

Questions about being a Grant Advisor? Contact James!

Heather Rapp - Program Associate - headshot
Heather Rapp
Program Associate
Phone: 779-210-8209
Email: Heather Rapp
James Patterson - Senior Program Director - headshot
James Patterson
Senior Program Director
Phone: 779-210-8206
Email: James Patterson
It only takes a few hours to make a BIG impact! Hear from current CFNIL scholarships advisors about their experience.

Ready to sign up to volunteer as a CFNIL Advisor? Submit your information!

CFNIL Advisor Interest Form