Healing Illinois is a racial healing initiative of the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS), in partnership with The Chicago Community Trust, designed to distribute $4.5 million grants to organizations across the state to begin, or continue, the work of racial healing.

As a subcontractor of this initiative, the Southern Illinois Community Foundation encourages applicants to call our office for assistance. At no cost, we can provide applicants the assistance they need to host online/virtual meetings in order to help your plannings and projects more efficiently.


In order to be eligible, applicant must be a nonprofit organization with a with evidence that it has been recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as an organization described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Code, and in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State, or part of a school or other local governmental agency.

Applicant must be located in or project must be directed to communities in the Illinois Department of Humans Services Region 5 counties (see map below or Click Here).

UPDATE….Grants must be expended by March 31, 2021 with grant report completed by April 10, 2021.

The Healing Illinois grant is available to organizations that will use the money in one of the following ways:

  • Promoting dialogue that builds understanding and empathy on issues of race. This involves activities such as facilitated discussions, round tables, and speaking events.

  • Encouraging collaboration on community projects or ideas, whether in person or virtually. Community murals, storytelling and performance events and racial justice campaigns fall under this umbrella.

  • Facilitating learning in areas of racism and racial equity. Eligible projects can take the form of trainings, technical assistance, creating educational materials for community-wide programming, or purchasing educational materials for an organization’s staff, board, and volunteers.

  • Finally, “Seeding Connection,” which involves activities that “reaffirm the humanity in each of us and uplift what unites us rather than what divides us.” According to the Healing Illinois website, racial healing circles, peace gatherings, and activities that pursue restorative justice are examples of projects viable for funding.



The Southern Illinois Community Foundation engages the people of our region in building a tradition of philanthropy. We are committed to creating an opportunity for donors to participate in local community development efforts to address the changing needs of our community through charitable giving.