United Way Quad Cities is accepting applications for its Community Impact Grants from nonprofits, grassroots organizations and others that are serving the residents in Scott and Rock Island counties in the areas of education, income and health.

The deadline for organizations to apply is Jan. 13, 2023, at 4:30 p.m., according to a news release.

Last year, United Way Quad Cities awarded nearly $3 million to 51 organizations working to advance equity in the areas of education, income and health. Together, these funded partners helped close to 75,000 people in the Quad Cities.

These grants are made possible by the support and contributions to United Way from approximately 250 local companies and 9,000 Quad Citians.

Rene Gellerman is president/CEO of United Way of the Quad Cities Area.

“Local support means local impact,” said Rene Gellerman, United Way Quad Cities’ president and CEO. “Led by over 100 local volunteers, we find, fund and partner with the Quad Cities’ most effective social impact programs and organizations in the region.”

In 2020, United Way collaborated with a broad spectrum of community partners to develop its Rise United 2030 community goals, a set of 10-year objectives to build a future in which more Quad Citizens have the opportunity and access to thrive.

“Our Rise United goals are our North Star,” said Gellerman. “To drive progress, the Community Impact Grants will advance our three key levers and approach them as overlapping, interconnected issues,” said Gellerman.

“We know that children who have good early health care are more likely to be prepared for school, and kids who enter school ready to learn are more likely to be ‘reading to learn’ by third grade. Students who read proficiently are more likely to graduate high school ready for college or career and living-wage jobs. And, when they enter the workforce and can save for the future and cover costs of health care, child care and other basic monthly expenses, they can lay a strong foundation for success in their own children’s lives.”

United Way Quad Cities in January 2022 gave out $2.9 million in new grants to 51 area organizations.

United Way Quad Cities Impact Areas, Goals & Key Lever Indicators

Education:

Goal: Help more students graduate high school prepared to succeed in college or career.

Levers:

  • Increase to 90% the number of Quad Cities students reading on grade level by third grade.
  • Double the achievement rate for Black and Hispanic students to close the racial gap.

Income:

Goal: Quad Cities families are financially stable.

Lever: Increase by 20% the number of Quad Cities young adults who earn a living wage.

Health:

Goal: Quad Citizens are living happy, productive, healthy lives.

Lever: Increase to 95% the number of Quad Citizens who have routine access to affordable health care.

United Way’s Vice President of Community Impact Marci Zogg said, “While the Rise United 2030 goals are straightforward, we know the areas to influence or the barriers that need to be broken vary greatly. Therefore, in addition to these direct measures to track progress, there are a number of specific outcomes as well as indicators that we’re funding because they can impact progress on a particular goal.”

United Way’s Community Impact Agenda for funding includes eight strategies and 65 outcomes. “When combined together, all these indicators roll up to demonstrate the impact our work is having in our community. By strengthening education, income and health together, we can create lasting change for all Quad Citizens,” Zogg said. 

The annual grant investment process is competitive and involves a rigorous application review led by panels of community volunteers. 

Grant awardees will be announced in May 2023 with distributions beginning in July.

To learn more about the strategy areas and outcomes open for funding — or to apply for funding — visit here.

About the Grants

Eligible to apply are:

  • Nonprofits: 501(c)(3) IRS status or 170(b)(1)(A) public institutions;
  • Grassroots Organizations: community-based organizations or organized groups of individuals who have identified a specific issue/problem and are working collectively toward a solution;
  • Social Entrepreneurs: Individuals, companies or aspiring nonprofits with a novel solution to a social problem.

To view a complete list of eligibility requirements, visit unitedwayqc.org/apply and view the resources.

Seeking volunteers to review grant applications

United Way seeks local volunteers to share their time to serve on one or more of the eight investment panels. Volunteers will carefully study requests for funding and recommend the programs and organizations that best align with United Way Quad Cities’ education, income and health strategies and have the potential for the highest performance outcomes aligned with the Rise United 2030 community goals.

“Volunteering is a powerful way to invest your time and talents to shape the future of the region,” Zogg said. “The funds raised by our United Way are invested in local programs to address the very real challenges that people face in our community, which is why it’s so important to us that local people help determine how those dollars are invested.”

Anyone age 18 or older and committed to United Way’s goals of advancing equity and improving education, income and health should register to volunteer at www.unitedwayqc.org/investmentpanel. Volunteers must be able to work collaboratively, make objective decisions, be open to compromise and maintain confidentiality.

“By becoming a panel volunteer, you are making our community a better place. You’re also gaining knowledge of the needs in our community and learning how local organizations are aligning and working together to improve lives and strengthen the Quad Cities.”

Volunteers will meet via Zoom five times between February and April 2023. Panel meetings will be held about every other week on the same day and time, with multiple options currently available, for a total of about 25 hours. Initial training and orientation will be provided by United Way.

United Way Quad Cities’ Board of Directors will approve final funding amounts in May 2023.

For more information, call United Way Quad Cities at 563-355-4310 or email info@unitedwayqc.org.

About United Way Quad Cities

United Way is a community-based social change organization that puts opportunity in the hands of all Quad Citizens.