With revenues down for both municipal agencies and communities organizations in northern Illinois, due to the pandemic and other economic challenges, ComEd is stepping up to support efforts to protect the environment, enhance public safety and increase equity in access to the arts. The energy company is again accepting applications for grants, up to $10,000 per grantee, from municipal and public safety agencies, as well as arts and culture organizations in the areas ComEd serves.
In partnership with Openlands, Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and the League of Chicago Theatres, ComEd offers three grant programs: Green Region, Powering Safe Communities and Powering the Arts, respectively. For the past several years, these grants have helped restore and enhance natural habitats for learning, enjoyment and to support wildlife; funded LED stop signs and radar speed displays to improve safety; and provided underserved students access to summer arts and culture programs.
"ComEd and its employees understand the economic impacts the pandemic has had on both the individuals and communities we're privileged to serve," said Melissa Washington, senior vice president of governmental and external affairs at ComEd. "In response to these challenges, our employees have volunteered more than 11,000 hours and raised approximately $1.6 million in 2020 to support the communities in which they live and work. In the same year, ComEd, Exelon and the Exelon Foundation provided approximately $18.6 million to support communities and organizations across northern Illinois.
"By working with organizations that have a deep understanding of the needs of the communities ComEd serves, we're able to further identify and support projects for competitive grants that can have significant, positive impacts for the people who live there," Washington added.
Grant applications for each of the following programs are being accepted through 5 p.m. CST March 26, 2021.
Green Region grants,since 2013, have supported public agencies in their efforts to plan for, protect and improve public spaces for the benefit of all. These grants support open-space projects that focus on the planning, acquisition and improvement of local parks, natural areas and recreation resources. This year, in addition to pollinator projects, grants will focus on climate resiliency, which includes projects that help a system maintain its natural functions from stressors of climate change. A summary of 2020 Green Region winners can be found here.
Powering Safe Communities grants have supported public safety and electrification projects since 2014. This year, grants will again include a focus on electrification projects that reduce carbon emissions, improve public health outcomes and advance community resiliency. More details on Powering Safe Communities grants, including a link to apply, can be found here.
Powering the Arts grants,since 2018, have supported arts and culture organizations that recognize how increasing access to the arts enhances equity and the vibrancy of local communities. These grants support organizations in their efforts to reach new and diverse audiences, with an expanded focus on those looking at creative ways to connect with audiences during the pandemic, such as offering innovative performances on digital platforms. A summary of 2020 Powering the Arts winners can be found here.
For more information on each grant program, including eligibility guidelines and how to apply, visit ComEd.com/Grants.
ComEd is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation (EXC) - Get Report, a Fortune 100 energy company with approximately 10 million electricity and natural gas customers - the largest number of customers in the U.S. ComEd powers the lives of more than 4 million customers across northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state's population. For more information visit ComEd.com and connect with the company on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
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