#ILGive is the perfect way to give back to your community

I often dream of being a philanthropist. I can think of no better job than finding worthy charities to support and help. But until I find a money tree, I settle with giving what I can, when I can, with my time, money and talents. Luckily, Forefront is organizing #ILGive from May 30-31.

#ILGive is a statewide, 24-hour online fundraising event to raise money for our local communities. #ILGive wants to inspire new donors and increase awareness to local nonprofits to make Illinois a more vibrant place to live.

Participation is easy: just visit the #ILGive website and find an organization to support. You can search by causes that are dear to you and that range from animals and art to youth and poverty to specific communities.

Here are a few nonprofits in Chicago Metropolitan and Lake County that I urge you to consider supporting or at least learn more about.

WeeBits for Families

WeeBits was started by pediatric therapists who saw the need to empower families by providing cost-effective education and experiences to improve children’s wellness and development. WeeBits works with children who are at risk for developmental delays or have diagnosed delays and helps them succeed regardless of economic hardship or insurance coverage.

One Hope United

One Hope United has been investing in Illinois families and children for more than 120 years. It offers a diverse range of early childhood education, prevention, intervention and community-based programs.Home of the SparrowHome of the Sparrow began more than 30 years ago to make a difference for the homeless in McHenry County. They opened the first shelter for homeless women and children in McHenry County and continue helping women and children today through a transitional shelter program, outreach and prevention, a subsidized apartment program, affordable housing and rapid rehousing. They also run five thrift stores to support the mission and provide a zero-cost shop for clients.

Bright Promises Foundation 

The Bright Promises Foundation creates opportunities for children to reach their full potential. They partner with other organizations to increase access to quality early childhood education for low-income children, address the impact of childhood traumas and enhance parental engagement with at-risk children’s social and emotional learning.

Casa Central

Casa Central offers a network of services including Head Start education, out-of-school time support, interim housing, violence intervention and other valuable resources to vulnerable members of the community.Words on WheelsWords on Wheels volunteers to go places in their local communities to engage with at-risk babies through bubbles, puppets, music and stories. Their goal is to ensure that all children be provided with early childhood brain development opportunities before they start school.

United Way of Lake County

The United Way of Lake County is focused on bridging the achievement gap to ensure that all Lake County children reach academic milestones. They invest in programs that support children from birth through high school such as providing learning materials, summer camps and reading tutors.

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