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Grant Opportunities

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Grant Opportunities

The Greater Freeport Partnership receives notice of open grants opportunities for various business types and projects. Continue to review this page periodically as grants are posted when they become available.

Small business grants provide financial aid without the burden of repayment, but obtaining them may be competitive. Federal and state agencies, corporations and industry-specific organizations may offer grant funding. For more information, click here.

The Greater Freeport Partnership does it’s best to update information on grant opportunities as they become available. 

DCEO Grant Opportunities

For a complete list of DCEO grants, click here.

Illinois Grocery Initiative

Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) announced $3.5 million in available grant funding for local grocers through the Equipment Upgrades Program as part of the Illinois Grocery Initiative. These grants will provide funding for energy-efficient equipment upgrades for existing grocery stores, with priority given to those located in food-insecure communities across the state. Grantees will be selected through a competitive Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) process.

Qualified applicants can apply for grants between $25,000 to $250,000, with a 1:3 match required. Applications for this round of grants will be accepted until March 25, 2024, at 5:00 p.m. To view the NOFO, see the webinar schedule, and apply for the grant, please visit the DCEO website. Interested parties are encouraged to reach out to for application assistance.

Deadline: March 25, 2024 at 5:00 pm.

Equitable Energy Future Grant Program

Provides front-loaded funding of up to $1 million to support development of energy efficiency and renewable energy projects, businesses, community organizations, and job creation benefitting historically disadvantaged populations.

Deadline: June 30, 2024 by 5:00 PM

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) | Link

LIHEAP will begin accepting applications on October 2, 2023, through August 15, 2024, or until funds are exhausted.

Illinois BEAD Map Challenge Process

Illinois was awarded $1.04 billion in federal Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program funds by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) to continue our efforts to connect all homes and businesses to modern high-speed internet. The BEAD Program rules require states to prioritize funds in this order:

Connect unserved locations (available service is 25/3 megabits per second or less)
Connect underserved locations (available service is at least 25/3 mbps but less than 100/20 Mbps)
Connect Community Anchor Institutions to gigabit symmetrical service (1,000/1,000 Mbps)

Click here to learn more about eligibility and the BEAD Challenge Process, watch recorded webinars, and download one-pagers.

DCEO Grant Basics Learning Library


Private/Foundation Grants

RiseUp! | Link

A childcare business cohort, tailored exclusively for childcare entrepreneurs, Licensed home providers, and Childcare center providers.

Deadline February 6, 2024

ABPA emPOWER24 Small Business Grant | Link

Open to ambitious, aspiring female entrepreneurs looking for start-up funding for an Illinois-based business.

Deadline February 19, 2024

McKinsey Fast Grants | Link

Four organizations whose founders show significant promise for local community impact will be selected for a $10,000 grant and provided expertise support for six months (May – November).

Deadline February 29, 2024

2024 AARP Community Challenge | Link

Open to 501(c)(3), 501(c)(4), and 501(c)(6) nonprofits (Nonprofit organizations must be recognized by the IRS to receive funds.); Government entities; and other types of organizations considered on a case-by-case basis.

Deadline March 6, 2024

Cyber-Safe Incentive Program from IMEC | Link

Open to Illinois small and mid-sized manufacturers (SMMs), focusing on meeting the NIST 800-171 or CMMC standards.

Deadline March 31, 2024

Exelon Racial Equity Capital Fund | Link

The Racial Equity Capital Fund was created to strengthen communities and help minority businesses grow by providing affordable capital to minority-owned businesses and businesses in underserved and under-resourced communities that may have had challenges accessing and securing funding. The capital fund is expected to invest in numerous businesses throughout Exelon’s service areas over the next three years with estimated loan amounts between $100,000 and $300,000 and equity investments of nearly $1 million.

Due: Ongoing

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