Posts Tagged ‘Great Lake Award’

Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s leading philanthropic partner, today (May 2) held a lively Town Hall session with more than 100 representatives from area nonprofit organizations to educate them about important new resources and tools offered by the foundation.

“Legacy Foundation has been granting funds into the community and building partnerships with area nonprofits for 20 years,” said Harry J. Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer. “We are proud to bring the area’s nonprofit sector the next level of collaboration tools, training and development opportunities and online resources that will help them raise money and build capacity. This will, over the long term, benefit the people of Lake County by enhancing the delivery of services from these organizations.”

The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation

Legacy Foundation introduced The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation, a nonprofit mentoring and resource center. Through The Think Tank, Legacy Foundation staff and partners will help the area’s nonprofit sector solve problems and enhance nonprofit organizations’ capacity to deliver services.

Resources offered by The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation include:

  • Capacity-building grants
  • Facilitation of Communities of Practice
  • Meeting facilitation
  • Free meeting space at Legacy Foundation’s convenient Merrillville offices
  • Collection of online resources
  • Referrals to community training resources
  • Research, data collection and analysis
  • Development of young philanthropists in Northwest Indiana
  • Fundraising opportunities for Lake County nonprofits via www.legacyfdn.org

A primary focus for The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation over the next year will be building communities of practice. Communities of practice bring together participants including nonprofit members, business professionals, civic leaders, religious leaders, funders and donors to build innovative partnerships that address community needs. The participants share their knowledge in specific service areas, which may include arts and culture, education, the environment and human services.

The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation is led by Director Trish Alt, who brings an extensive background in community foundation leadership and nonprofit collaboration to Legacy Foundation.

New grant opportunities

Legacy Foundation announced a new grantmaking strategy designed to strengthen the Lake County community.

“We define a strong Lake County community as one where informed and engaged citizens want to live, work, worship and play,” said Lara Kalwinski, Legacy Foundation vice president. “Our nonprofit community thrives as we dedicate ourselves to the collaborative spirit and to demonstrating collective impact.”

Legacy offers grants for:

  • Nonprofit Training – up to $2,000 for organizations seeking professional guidance on how to manage their operations, programming, and fundraising
  • Transforming Lake County – programming that relates to a measure of improved economic, social or environmental well-being
  • Informed and Engaged Urban Communities – grants from the John S. and James L. Knight Fund for organizations bringing residents together to collectively address issues residents identify as important and to take action in ways they themselves deem appropriate
  • Neighborhood Spotlight – collaborative efforts targeting local needs, coming in 2013
  • Improving Student Success – for organizations working to increase high school graduation rates, college and career opportunities
  • Supporting Hobart Seniors – grants from the Maria Reiner Senior Citizens Fund to support a vibrant senior community in Hobart

Online fundraising platform

Legacy Foundation also introduced an online donor engagement platform that enables nonprofit organizations to fundraise directly from the community with minimal effort and no cost. By simply clicking on the “Give in Lake County” button on Legacy Foundation’s newly redesigned website, www.legacyfdn.org, a 501(c)(3) organization can post and promote a need to the community.

Members of the public are encouraged to visit Legacy Foundation’s website often, click on “Give in Lake County,” and view local needs. Giving even a small amount can help an organization make a difference in the community.

$10,000 Cara Spicer Award

Vande Velde announced the application process for the Cara Spicer Award, a $10,000 one-time award to be made later this year to a Lake County organization.

Applicants for the award must have participated in Legacy Foundation’s previous Great Lake Award Initiative workshops for at least three years and must not have received the Great Lake Award for Excellence. Applications will be available via Legacy Foundation’s website June 1, with completed applications due August 1. The award will be presented in late fall.

For more details on all these programs, see Legacy Foundation’s newly redesigned website at www.legacyfdn.org.


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Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s leading philanthropic partner, invites area nonprofits to learn about new tools and resources that can help build their organizations at an informational session from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Wednesday, May 2, at the South Shore Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, 7770 Corinne Drive, Hammond.

Legacy Foundation will launch its nonprofit mentoring and resource center, The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation. The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation will help the area’s nonprofit sector solve problems and enhance their capacity to deliver quality services. Participants in the session will learn how to access resources offered by The Think Tank at Legacy Foundation, including: convening and facilitation of communities of practice; a newly redesigned website; meeting space; research, data collection and analysis; and a donor engagement platform that can enhance local fundraising.

Also during the Town Hall session, nonprofit organizations will gain insight into Legacy Foundation’s updated grantmaking strategy. In addition, Legacy Foundation will announce how to apply for the $10,000 Cara Spicer Award.

Seats for the Town Hall session are limited. Organizations that wish to send a representative are asked to RSVP to legacy@legacyfdn.org or (219) 736-1880 by 5 p.m. on Monday, April 30.

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Legacy Foundation sponsors annual series of workshops to build and sustain robust organizations serving the community

(MERRILLVILLE, Indiana) – Lake County nonprofit organizations are encouraged to apply now for the Great Lake Award Initiative, an opportunity to build capacity through training, technical assistance and a “Make it Happen” grant opportunity.

Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s Community Foundation, has been sponsoring and organizing this initiative since 2005. To date, more than 50 area nonprofit groups have participated in the program.

“The Great Lake Award Initiative gives leaders of nonprofit organizations of all sizes and with varying missions a unique opportunity to gain hands-on knowledge that they can put to use immediately,” said Cara Spicer, program officer for Legacy Foundation. “This year we are focusing on maximizing organizational strengths and identifying extra capacity in these areas that can support improvement in other areas of the organization.”

Participating organizations can:

  • Complete an organizational self-assessment
  • Select from a menu of seven training events covering topics such as strategy, board leadership, fundraising, communication, financial reporting and resources, presented by highly qualified trainers
  • Gain from the experience of other nonprofit leaders as peer mentors
  • Be awarded “Make It Happen” grant dollars of up to $1,000 per organization
  • Qualify to compete for a 2013 Great Lake Award for Excellence in Nonprofit Management


Complete details and the simple application for the program can be found on Legacy Foundation’s Web site, www.legacyfoundationlakeco.org/nonprofits.html. The application deadline is 5 p.m. on March 11. The program begins March 29. The first 20 organizations that submit applications meeting all program requirements will be selected for participation. There is no charge to the organizations to participate. Questions may be directed to Cara Spicer at (219) 736-1880.

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Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s Community Foundation, offers a new philanthropic resource to serve nonprofit organizations’ staff and volunteers, individual donors, professional advisors, community leaders and anyone who works to advance charitable giving.

Legacy Foundation produced its 2009-10 Annual Report as a colorful binder full of useful information that goes beyond a financial report to provide users a tool to use in their philanthropic pursuits. The entire resource is available on the Legacy Foundation Web site at http://www.legacyfoundationlakeco.org.

“We designed this binder with you, the user, in mind,” Harry J. Vande Velde III, president and chief executive officer, told nearly 200 guests at Legacy Foundation’s recent community reception, where the binder was introduced and distributed. “I encourage you to refer to it frequently and to add information throughout the year relevant to fundraising and grant making.”

Vande Velde noted that the binder is a tangible example of how Legacy Foundation serves the Lake County community.

Harry J. Vande Velde III, President and CEO of Legacy Foundation

Harry J. Vande Velde III, President and CEO of Legacy Foundation speaking at the annual reception

“We are mission oriented, constituency sensitive and fiscally responsible,” he stated. “Legacy Foundation is focused on facilitating philanthropy throughout the community, supporting the nonprofit organizations that do important work to enhance the quality of life, and being good stewards of donors’ gifts.”

The Legacy Foundation report is titled, “What’s Your Legacy?” In addition to audited financial statements for the foundation’s most recent fiscal year and rosters of current staff, volunteer board members and committees, the binder includes:

  • Highlights of programs and scholarships funded through Legacy Foundation.
  • An honor roll of donors, partners and friends who support the Foundation.
  • Grant guidelines, tips and forms to make the process of applying for grants simpler and more productive.
  • Information about opportunities to participate in Legacy Foundation initiatives.
  • A useful glossary of philanthropic terminology.
  • An update on Project 100%, Legacy Foundation’s strategic initiative to address educational attainment in Lake County.

Lake County’s Community Foundation honors Ed Radigan at annual reception

Legacy Foundation’s annual community reception featured a tribute to the late Edward J. Radigan, longtime community leader, businessman, philanthropist and the first president of Legacy Foundation. Radigan passed away Sept. 21 at the age of 85.

Dr. John T. Scully offered touching reflections about his lifelong friend. Nancy K. Johnson, who succeeded Radigan as president of Legacy Foundation, shared fond and sometimes humorous memories of learning from him.

Also during the reception, Legacy Foundation recognized the 2010 Great Lake Award Initiative participants and their mentors.

Great Lake Award Initiative Participants talk with guests.

Great Lake Award Initiative Participants talk with guests.

To request a hard copy of the Legacy Foundation philanthropic resource binder, call (219) 736-1880 or e-mail maerts@legacyfoundationlakeco.org.

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