In my work at Crossroads Fund, it is always a privilege to witness grassroots leaders giving voice to the social justice issues that directly affect them. One of my most memorable site visits from this past spring’s grantmaking cycle was facilitated entirely by volunteer leaders from the organization’s constituency – in this case, low-income seniors from Jane Addams Senior Caucus working for better, more affordable housing and healthcare.
Crossroads Fund mourns the loss of an amazing Chicago organizer and member of our community. On January 29th, John Castillo-Pennycuff passed away. John was a beloved and respected activist in the LGBTQ community. He served on the Chicago Commission on Human Relations Mayor's Advisory Council on LGBT Issues, was a member of Queer Nation Chicago, Equal Marriage NOW, the Coalition against Bashing, and many other groups, but I knew him as a friend.
Over the last 30 years, Crossroads Fund has been the first foundation funder of countless groups in Chicago, including United African Organization, Centro de Trabajadores Unidos, ACT/UP Chicago and more. We’re willing to take a risk and help new and emerging organizations hire their first staff, move out of the garage and into an office or launch their first major campaign.
For three decades, Crossroads Fund has been supporting grassroots movements for racial, social and economic justice in the Chicago area. Our grantees have won historic victories, from accessibility in public transportation to an end to the Illinois death penalty.