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SECC Requests Project Proposals for Neighborhood Enhancement Grant

CHICAGO (April 24, 2019) – The South East Chicago Commission (SECC) is delighted to announce a Request For Proposals (RFP) for the 2019 Neighborhood Enhancement Grant Program with generous support from the Elizabeth Louise “Betty Lou” Smith Fund, Public Health Institute of Metropolitan Chicago (PHIMC), the MacArthur Foundation, Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH), Hyde Park Bank, a Wintrust Company and individuals donors. Since 1999, the program has offered funds to neighborhood schools, religious congregations, community organizations, park advisory councils, and block groups to support neighborhood beautification projects.

By working together, we can build community from within the community. The power of partnerships can help the neighborhood thrive and create safe places and spaces for everyone to enjoy.

– Diane Burnham, Executive Director for South East Chicago Commission

The SECC and our partners are excited to resume making grants for 2019 that assist eligible organizations with neighborhood beautification projects in the Hyde Park, Kenwood, Oakland, Washington Park, and Woodlawn communities. Grant submissions are reviewed and considered based on the strength of the proposal and the breadth of potential community impact. The grant award amount is based upon the proposed project, with a maximum grant of $4,000 per organization.

Proposed projects must:

• Be submitted online. Click here to a launch the application.
• Be highly visible from the street
• Be completed between June 1, 2019 – November 30, 2019
• Physically enhance the neighborhood and build on the character and uniqueness of the community
• Strengthen civic pride and a strong sense of community
• Be sustainable
Each proposal will be reviewed by a committee comprised of representatives from the community. Proposal deadline has been extended to Friday June 14, 2019.

Following are a few examples of how the community has benefited from previous Neighborhood Enhancement Grant awards:
Chicago Eco House – Vernon Park Garden will work to develop a blighted vacant lot between E. 60th-61st and S. Vernon Street by doing the vacant lot clean up, raised flower beds, creating a “pocket park” community space. (Woodlawn)
The Kleo Center – Kleo Barrett Memorial Mural Project will honor the life and legacy of Kleo Barrett for whom the organization was named. The design includes open palms which symbolize welcoming and a sense of safety. (Washington Park)
Nichols Park Advisory Council – 55th Street Fountain & Floral Bed Enhancement project will work to improve and enhance the park fountain with landscaping and floral planting to create a welcoming south entrance to the park at East 55th Street. (Hyde Park)

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Grant, marking more than $550,000 invested in local communities and thousands of local residents involved and affected by the South East Chicago Commission’s dedication to beautification, sustainability, and neighborhood improvements.

For more information, visit our Neighborhood Enhancement Grant page.