Giving Greater in the City of Gratitude

A woman stands in a crowd waving

The River City. P-Town. Whiskey City. Greater Peoria has its share of nicknames. One more that’s been catching on recently? “City of Gratitude.” It’s an apt moniker for a community that has a long history of giving thanks for all we have — and giving back to lift up those who need a helping hand.

Consider this: The Heart of Illinois United Way is one of the highest performing chapters in the country based on per capita giving, while the Jim and Trudy Maloof St. Jude Affiliate Clinic — the first St. Jude affiliate in the nation — raises more funds than any other affiliate. And those are just two examples of Greater Peoria’s compassionate generosity and greater giving.

If you’re in search of a community that prioritizes philanthropy, you’re in the right place. Here are just a few ways you can make a difference here.

Charitable Giving

There are dozens of nonprofit organizations doing critical work throughout Greater Peoria, and you can make direct contributions to any cause that’s close to your heart. By giving to the Heart of Illinois United Way, the region’s largest non-governmental investor in health and human care programs, your dollars support more than 40 partner agencies focused on the education, financial stability and health needs of our community.

If you’re looking for another way to leave a local legacy that fulfills your personal mission, get in touch with the Community Foundation of Central Illinois (CFCI). Established in 1985, the organization is focused on building permanent charitable endowments to serve the needs of Greater Peoria. With extensive knowledge of the community, CFCI links donors to charitable agencies that align with their own objectives and philanthropic desires.

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteerism is one of the most powerful forms of philanthropy — and there are plenty of opportunities to use your time and talents for the greater good. Join a nonprofit organization’s board or board committee. Volunteer for a cause or an event. Offer to serve as a mentor.

You’ll find local chapters of many national charitable organizations in Greater Peoria: American Red Cross, Boys & Girls Clubs, Easterseals, Goodwill Industries, Habitat for Humanity and Salvation Army, just to name a few. And you’ll quickly discover many other amazing organizations that are unique to our region. Try connecting with the Human Services Collaborative — a collaborative network of local human service agencies — and help invest in the greater good of Greater Peoria.

How to Get Started Giving Back

Want to make sure you’re giving back where it’s needed most? Check out the Heart of Illinois United Way’s online volunteer center, which will connect you with local nonprofits seeking support in specific areas. You can search by organization, by need or even by remote or virtual opportunities. Or try out the Skills Link feature, which will match you with nonprofits looking for your particular talents.

These are just a few ways you can give back to the community… and help make Greater Peoria even greater.