It's the giving season! Make your gift today in support of the Now! Fund here.



Grantmaking in 2020 dwarfed any previous year. ECF distributed a total of $5.97 million, over three times 2019’s total of $1.67 million. 

83% of 2020’s total—$4.95 million—was distributed as competitive and strategic grants to Evanston NPOs.

ECF’s portfolio earned 12.4% amidst the upheaval in global economies and the eventual recovery of financial markets.


2020 grants & distributions: $5.97 million total;
$4.95 million in competitive and strategic grants


For more details, please see our grantmaking history at is honored to develop and oversee the distribution of United Way of Metro Chicago funds for Evanston Cradle to Career grants in the amount of $217,515.

*Partners for the Future is a Donor Advised Fund of ECF, from which grants are managed by ECF program staff for competitive and strategic grant making through the Building the Future and Partners for the Future programs.


By the Numbers: Evanston Community Rapid Response



In 2020, ECF’s traditional method of grantmaking was no longer viable, given the urgency and scope of community need. To address the immediate needs of Evanston’s nonprofits, our leadership team quickly mobilized to create the Evanston Community Rapid Response (ECRR) Fund. The Fund enabled ECF to respond quickly to reduce negative impact on the community. Our grants will continue to help organizations become sustainable over time and recover from the ill effects of the pandemic.

Over the course of 2020, ECRR Grants were given to the following organizations.

  • The Actors Gymnasium
  • Books & Breakfast
  • C&W Market and Ice Cream Parlor
  • Canal Shores Golf Course
  • Carter Investments, Inc DBA Feast & Imbibe
  • Center for Independent Futures
  • Center for Neighborhood Technology
  • Warren W. Cherry Preschool
  • Chessmen Club of the North Shore
  • Childcare Network of Evanston
  • Children's Advocacy Center of North and Northwest Cook County
  • City of Evanston—Dementia Friendly Evanston Task Force
  • City of Evanston Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department
  • Connections for the Homeless
  • Cradles to Crayons
  • Curt's Cafe
  • Evanston Chamber of Commerce
  • Evanston Cradle to Career
  • Evanston Cricket Club
  • Evanston History Center
  • Evanston Latinos/Fuerza Latina
  • Evanston Public Library
  • Evanston Rebuilding Warehouse
  • Evanston Scholars
  • Evanston Skokie School District 65
  • Evanston Symphony Orchestra Association
  • Family Focus
  • Family Promise Chicago North Shore
  • Farmworker and Landscaper 
  • Advocacy Project
  • Fellowship of Afro American Men
  • First United Methodist Church
  • Girls Play Sports, Inc. NFP
  • Gyros Planet
  • Haitian Congress to Fortify Haiti
  • Hillside Food Pantry
  • Hip Circle Empowerment Center
  • Impact Behavioral Health Partners
  • Infant Welfare Society of Evanston
  • Institute for Therapy through the Arts
  • Interfaith Action of Evanston
  • James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy
  • Jennifer's Edibles, Inc.
  • Learning Bridge Early Childhood Education Center
  • Literacy Works
  • McGaw YMCA
  • Meals on Wheels Northeastern Illinois
  • Metropolitan Family Services
  • Mitchell Museum of the American Indian
  • Mudlark Theater
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness, Cook County North Suburban
  • Northlight Theatre
  • Open Communities
  • Open Studio Project
  • PEER Services, Inc.
  • Perspective Group and Photography Gallery
  • Piven Theatre Workshop
  • PTA Council, for the PTA Equity Project
  • Puerta Abierta Preschool
  • Chef Q—Teertsemasesottehg
  • Rainbows for All Children
  • Reba Early Learning Center
  • Reba Place Development Corp.
  • STEM School Evanston
  • Watershed Collective
  • Y.O.U. (Youth & Opportunity United)
  • Young Black & Lit
  • Youth Job Center
  • YWCA Evanston/North Shore