Our Great HEART Give 2016 Finalists

It’s no secret: Great HEART Give is in full swing. This post serves as more than just a look into each of our nonprofits. It is also an opportunity to vote for who you’d like to see win the $10,000 technology grant while learning a little more about our finalists in the process. Let’s get started!

BBBS2

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Illinois
Decatur, IL

Mission: Our mission is to promote the moral, mental, physical and social well being of children. Big Brothers Big Sisters is committed to organize a body of responsible adults who will develop individual relationships with and to interest themselves in the welfare of children who, due to the circumstances of their lives, need the attention and companionship of adults outside their families and will employ methods that will promote the moral, mental, physical and social welfare of these children.

If we win: We will use the $10,000 technology grant to provide our mentors and mentees with the technological capabilities to provide the best experience every step of the way.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

CASA2

CASA of East Central Illinois
Charleston, IL

Mission: CASA of East Central Illinois is a not-for-profit corporation that advocates for the best interests of abused and neglected children brought into the Coles County and/or Cumberland County juvenile court systems.

If we win: Winning a $10,000 technology grant would enable our program to expand our website, expand our advertising online for our program, and give volunteers the ability to give information online with our data management program. Most of all winning a $10,000 technology grant will give us the ability to find more volunteers, give more education to volunteers which directly benefits the abused and neglected children that we advocate for in the juvenile court.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

CommonPlace2

Common Place Family Learning Center
Peoria, IL

Mission: To embrace diversity and improve lives through education and family.

If we win: We would use the $10,000 technology grant to purchase up-to-date computers and related technology.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

HomesOfHope2

Homes of Hope, Inc.
Normal, IL

Mission: The mission of Homes of Hope is to serve and support adults with intellectual disabilities in a manner inspired by God’s call.

If we win: Our organization is in much need of a technology makeover. We are still clocking in and out on paper. Our trainings are conducted via VHS tapes and our phone system is in dire need of upgrading. Some of us use our personal cell phones for things work related. Our first priority is to ensure that our 5 homes and 5 vans are taken care of for our 19 adult residents.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

JuniorAchievement2

Junior Achievement of Central Illinois
Peoria Heights, IL

Mission: Junior Achievement inspires and prepares youth to succeed in a global economy through work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy education.

If we win: With our programs in high demand, Junior Achievement of Central Illinois recently expanded our licensed territory to include 29 counties in Central Illinois. Our organization now has the opportunity to serve new communities but will not be able to implement programs in those areas without the technology infrastructure to support an increase in volume and distance. In an attempt to best serve our students and maximize the fruit of our donor’s contributions, our organization uses donated equipment and software that is outdated and will soon need to be replaced for security reasons. A $10,000 technology grant would allow Junior Achievement to serve our community in a wider territory and with greater efficiency and security. The grant would be used in the purchase of an updated server, remote capabilities, conferencing equipment, and mobile technology. These components would lay the framework for growth of our services for years to come.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

Meadows2

Meadows Mennonite Retirement Communities of Normal and Chenoa
Normal, IL

Mission: To minister to the elderly in the belief that God desires older persons to enjoy dignity, respect, love, and care.

Use Grant for: Meadows very simply wants nothing but the best for our residents because they deserve it! They deserve the right to have every opportunity available to them. Technology affords them areas from which they can learn new experiences…or revisit old, for example if driving is unsafe for them now – they can enjoy it in virtual play. If they’ve only imagined flying an airplane – they may “live” that dream with technology. New and advanced technologies open so many doors for them to enrich their lives; exercise their minds and it permits them to dream and imagine; while calming the mind or even stimulating if necessary…helping them continue “life.” Technology in it’s many forms, has become a necessity but to some – it is still a dream that only gifts like those from you, create the reality. This dream can be costly… Meadows will strive even harder to win this gift in 2016…it is within our reach! Then with your help and training, we can provide these opportunities for our residents, our “Family” – so that we may continue to enrich their lives, showing them that the best is yet to come!

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

MidwestFoodBank2

Midwest Food Bank
Peoria, IL

Mission: to alleviate hunger and poverty by gathering and distributing food donations to not-for-profits and disaster sites without cost to recipients.

If we win: The Peoria Division of MFB was opened in 2007.  At that time, we set up a very simple phone system.  We have since grown exponentially, and in 2015 distributed over $16,000,000 worth of food to 240 agencies (in and around central IL), reaching 145,000 people each month.  We do so with the utilization of nearly 3,000 volunteers donating nearly 30,000 hours of time.  We have outgrown our initial simple phone system.  It is becoming a hampering issue, as our phones ring all day.  In order to better serve those in need, communicate with those from whom we procure food, and safely manage and take care of our generous volunteers it is crucial to update this system.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

StJosephs2

St. Joseph’s Home of Springfield
Springfield, IL

Mission: The mission of St. Joseph Home of Springfield is to provide the aging and their families with compassionate and individualized care in a respectful environment that welcomes and supports each resident’s religious beliefs and reflects the spirit of St. Francis of Assisi.

If we win: We need new workstations to replace older, outdated ones to improve and keep pace with new applications and functionality. Implement proactive monitoring to keep the IT environment running. We would like to implement an off-site back-up server for data security.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

CenterForPreventionOfAbuse2

The Center for Prevention of Abuse
Peoria, IL

Mission: to build a safe, peaceful community by empowering all people – women, children and men – to live free from violence and abuse. Each year, The Center provides emergency safe shelter and support services to approximately 5,000 victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, as well as elderly and disabled victims of abuse, neglect and financial exploitation. In addition, we provide school-based prevention education to nearly 30,000 local students to help them keep their bodies safe, prevent and address bullying, learn non-violent conflict resolution skills, and develop healthy relationships.

If we win: Our primary need is to replace two servers that are 8 years old and functioning at capacity while our data requirements continue to increase. We are also in need of updated desktop and laptop computers for a number of staff.

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

UCP2

United Cerebral Palsy Land of Lincoln
Springfield, IL

Mission: to provide innovative strategies to connect people with disabilities to their communities. Life Without Limits for People with Disabilities means that throughout the world disability is understood to be a common part of the human experience, neither defining nor limiting. This is the vision of the future for the 20 percent of the United States population; people with a disability. At United Cerebral Palsy Land of Lincoln (UCP) our responsibility is not only to assist individuals with disabilities to develop the skills needed to participate in their community, we must also prepare the community to accept people with disabilities. UCP provides a range of services to children and adults with disabilities and their families with a goal of developing skills that increase independence. Services designed and delivered based on the needs and desires of the individual and/or family include residential, creative life professionals, case management, Play2Learn, assistive technology, vocational skills training, job placement and supports, and summer camps. The UCP service area includes 27 counties in central Illinois.

If we win: UCP would like to utilize this generous grant to upgrade networking services provided to our clients at the Creative Life Professional Center, who strive to use our existing capabilities to develop themselves personally and professionally.  From physical architecture to modern wireless capabilities for wireless devices, your vote can make a true difference for those most limited by connectivity to the world.  More and more, we are finding that our clients are gaining access to new wireless technologies, with the potential to revolutionize their lives.  However, budgetary constraints have limited our ability to enable these amazing individuals to take advantage of these opportunities.  Please support UCP in it’s efforts to help these individuals take advantage of the resources that can truly connect them to the community, and to accomplish our ultimate mission: to provide a ‘Life Without Limits for People with Disabilities.”

VOTE BY ANSWERING THIS QUESTION CORRECTLY!
If you need help, see the organization’s website:

Online Voting has ended.

 

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