College Bound Opportunities (CBO)

College Bound Opportunities (CBO), is a local nonprofit that mentors low-income, high-achieving students, so they can attend and graduate from college. College Bound Opportunities mentors economically disadvantaged students to unleash their potential, graduate college, pursue meaningful professions, and inspire others to follow in their footsteps. Most CBO Scholars are first-generation college students and, without support, would likely forego college. Through CBO programs, including one-to-one mentoring between volunteers and scholars, tutoring, training services, laptop computers, and financial assistance during college, nearly 95% of CBO Scholars are graduating from college. The Foundation’s grant provides financial support to low-income students from Highland Park and Highwood to help with academic costs, textbooks, supplies, housing, and travel for college.

Highland Park Aquatics Club

The Highland Park Aquatics Club (HPAC) serves as a high quality competitive swim club for the cities of Highland Park and Highwood. HPAC coaches are committed to providing all swimmers a challenging yet nurturing swimming environment. The Highland Park Community Foundation’s grant will help subsidize the required swim association fees for low-income swimmers so they can participate and compete as members of HPAC.

Highland Park High School – Homework Club  

Homework Club is a free, after-school tutoring program in math, science, English, and social studies offered at Highland Park High School Monday through Thursday. In addition to tutoring, students can receive counseling services as well as ACT prep. Anywhere from 50 – 100 students attend Homework Club each week. The Foundation’s grant provides students a safe, positive, and healthy environment to spend time after school, keeping students connected to supportive adults and away from unstructured, unsafe environments; and to provide 6-8 free field trips for students during summer vacation.

Highland Park High School – National Hispanic Institute

The grant from the Highland Park Community Foundation helps fund scholarships for the National Hispanic Institute (NHI) Program and enables Highland Park High School to send several high-achieving Latino students to the NHI Leadership Conference. The weeklong Conference is held each summer at DePaul University. Students from across the U.S. attend to learn leadership, communication, civic government, and community activism skills. The conference brings high-achieving Latino students from around the country together for a week of intensive leadership training on a college campus so they may develop their confidence as leaders, learn public speaking and leadership skills, gain a sophisticated understanding of how democratic governments work, build motivation toward obtaining a college education, and returning to their communities with a commitment to serving as positive role models.


Highland Park High School – Working Together Programs

The Foundation’s grant supports five programs that provide various sports, crafts, and art instruction to children from low-income families in Highland Park and Highwood. The program is a partnership with Highland Park High School and the Working Together parent group. HPHS students are paired with the children and families for activities take place at the high school. The programs serve 150 children, aged 3-12, the majority of whom are low-income or students of color, and include dance, guitar, art, technology, and swimming.

Kids Rank

Kids Rank provides military children with a sense of stability through interactive group learning experiences and community service.  Kids Rank’s goal is to recognize and celebrate the positive characteristics that military children often develop in light of the numerous changes and challenges they face while living a military lifestyle. The program is open to school-aged military children from all branches of service including active duty, reservists, retirees and Families of the Fallen. The Community Outreach Initiative targets non-registered military children, their families and potential Community Partners. To cultivate and build relationships between Kids Rank and families with the goal of integrating them into our member programming while promoting awareness throughout the community to the needs, challenges, and strengths of military children. The Foundation’s grant assists with expenses of the program that addresses a gap in services for military children by engaging them in hands-on, skill building projects and volunteer opportunities designed to encourage resilience through the program’s core pillars of Connect, Lead, and Serve.

Highland Park Community Foundation Golden Apple

In 2010, the Highland Park Community Foundation and a local family foundation initiated an annual Highland Park-based Golden Apple Award to recognize outstanding teachers in the Highland Park School systems. Nominations are made in a rotating cycle: K-5, 6-8, and 9-12. A selection committee comprised of exemplary current and retired educators and administrators and former Highland Park Golden Apple award recipients, evaluate the extensive application and complete a full day of observation. The final recipient of the award is chosen based on instruction, content knowledge, student and staff interaction, and contribution to school and community.