Volunteer

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.

*Due to COVID-19, advisor meetings typically held in person may be conducted remotely. 

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: September 8, 2020
Scholarship Application Opens: December 1, 2020
Community Scholarship Fair: December 8, 2020
Advisor Recruitment Meeting: January 5, 2021
Application Closes: February 1, 2021
Scholarship Advisor Training: Mid-February 2021
Selection Committee Meetings: March 25-26 OR April 8-9, 2021
Scholarship Recipients Announced: May 1, 2021
Advisor Recruitment Meeting: May 11, 2021
Scholarship Award Night:  June 10, 2021

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

Community Grants Application Opens: August 10, 2020
Advisor Recruitment Meeting: September 8, 2020
Community Grants Application Closes: September 21, 2020
Grant Advisor Training: TBA - anticipated mid-October
Applications Open for Review: October 27, 2020
Grant Committee Review Meetings: November 2020
Board Approves Recommendations:  Mid-December 2020
Advisor Recruitment Meeting: January 5, 2021
Advisor Recruitment Meeting: May 11, 2021

Questions about being a Scholarship Advisor? Contact Ciara!

Questions about being a Grant Advisor? Contact James!

Ciara Stahly
Ciara Stahly
Program Officer
Phone: 779-210-8209
Email: Ciara Stahly
James Patterson
James Patterson
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 with the form below!