What's the Big Idea?
Big ideas. Big change. Starting now.
Have you ever said to a friend, neighbor, co-worker or classmate, "What this community really needs is … "?
Are you looking for seed funding to launch your idea for community change?
A giving group established by the Oak Park-River Forest Community Foundation, Entrepreneur Leaders in Philanthropy (ELP) will award an annual seed grant of $50,000 from the ELP Fund for a transformative idea. Through a competitive process, the aim is to make our community the best place to live, work and grow.
Big Idea online with Laura Maychruk
View the full interview. (4:37 min)
2018 Big Idea Finalists:
Access to Swimming
Provides water safety training and basic swimming instruction to children before 3rd grade, as studies have shown that if they have not learned by then, they will most likely never learn.
Big Box of Play
So that every child has access to multiple spaces where play, creativity and imagination are encouraged and supported through traveling pop-up exhibits.
Excellence with Equity
Increases college and career readiness by building trusting relationships between students, teachers, and families and a safe space to support individual student and family needs.
From Lawns to Gardens II
Converts local lawns into toxin-free gardens and landscapes.
Suicide Safer Community
Talk saves lives, we hope to create a community that reduces suicide attempts and prevents the incidence of suicide.
Who's Behind the BIG IDEA?
as of December 7, 2017
- Kent Barnett, ClientLoyalty
- Jamil Bou Saab, Terra Engineering
- Mark Coe, CTI Meeeting Technology
- Greg Coplan,
Benjamin Crane, Coplan & Crane
- Erica Cuneen, Beyond Properties
- Bruce Elegant, Rush Oak Park Hospital
- Tom Engoren, Seaway Supply Co.
- Andy Gagliardo, Gagliardo Realty Associates
- Tom Garvey, Founder of ICOMM Consulting, Inc.
- Bill Gee
- Dan Haley and Dawn Ferencak, Wednesday Journal
- Ron and Kristen Halverson, Halverson Group
- Robert Hauck, Huntingon Learning Center
- Meg and Gil Herman
- Keith Huizinga, on behalf of Kinslahger Brewing Co.
- Timothy Hunnewell, Truegivers
- Ken Hunt, VASCO
- Tom Irvin, Guggenheim Partners
- Aaron J Lebovitz, PhD
- James Lencioni, Aria Group Architects
- Scott Moller, Moller Family Foundation
- Marty Noll, Community Bank of Oak Park & River Forest
- Joseph Ottolino, West Suburban Medical Center
- Robert Pasin, Radio Flyer www.radioflyer.com
- Bob Planek and Bill Planek, Oak Park Apartments
- Rowan Richards, Assembilize www.assembilize.com
- Gabriela Rodil, Gabriela Rodil
- Kristi Ross, dough, inc. | TastyTrade
- Mary Jo and Stephen Schuler, Good Heart, Work Smart Foundation
- Jason Smith and Rachel Weaver, The Book Table
- Jeff Weissglass
- Pamela Whitehead, P&P Ltd Construction
- Cathy Yen, OPRF Chamber of Commerce