© 2023 WNIJ and WNIU
Northern Public Radio
801 N 1st St.
DeKalb, IL 60115
Northern Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Report for America is a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered issues and communities.

Micro-Grants Will Give Community Art A Boost


Two Rockford-area nonprofits and a local business are teaming up to support artists and art organizations in Winnebago County. 

Kristen Paul is the director of destination development for the Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. She said the idea for the Our Journey micro-grants came about after print and t-shirt company Rockford Art Deli started the "Here for Good" campaign to support local businesses hit financially by COVID-19.

“So, we approached them and said we're a nonprofit organization, but we would love to work with another nonprofit, which was the Rockford [Area] Arts Council and see if we can donate these funds back," she shared.

Credit https://www.gorockford.com/resource-center/our-journey/
"Our Journey" t-shirt design.

She said, under the program, the Art Deli produces and sells Rockford-themed masks and t-shirts. It gives a part of the proceeds to the two groups to fund micro-grants to the arts community.

Paul said art sends a strong message to the community -- not only to those who live there -- but also to the visitors. 

“I mean, you can tell people who love their yard by the way it looks," she said. "And you can tell a community that is loved by its people by the way it's cared for. And I really think that art shows how much people care.”

The micro-grants will provide up to $500 to each recipient. Applications are now being accepted. The deadline for the first phase is June 12. 


Yvonne Boose is a 2020 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the GroundTruth Project which is a national service program that places talented journalists in local newsrooms.





Yvonne covers artistic, cultural, and spiritual expressions in the COVID-19 era. This could include how members of community cultural groups are finding creative and innovative ways to enrich their personal lives through these expressions individually and within the context of their larger communities. Boose is a recent graduate of the Illinois Media School and returns to journalism after a career in the corporate world.