United Way of Central Illinois

CFLL

When the pandemic hit this spring, there were immediate concerns over the basic needs of people and how to make sure those were being met. A joint effort between the Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln and United Way of Central Illinois came through in a big way.  

Damon and Aidan McParland pose for a photo
Damon McParland

While residents of Springfield wait for Gov. J.B. Pritzker to end his stay-at-home order, two members of the community have gathered their bagpipes to lift the city’s spirits and raise money during the pandemic. Reporter Mike Smith watched them perform and has this story.

Nonprofit organizations are being stretched thin during the coronavirus pandemic.  The Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln and the United Way of Central Illinois are overseeing the COVID-19 Response Fund for the Greater Capital Region of Illinois.    

 John Kelker with Adam Schnell
Katie Buck / NPR Illinois 91.9 UIS

Hello, I’m Adam Schnell for the 2018 NPR Illinois PodCamp. 

John Kelker is the head of the United Way, a company that volunteers and helps out other nonprofit companies.

flickr/ Bill Brooks

 The United Way of Illinois surveyed social services providers in the state and found that during the budget impasse, about  1 million of their clients have lost services due to lack of funding. 

While most say the county is a good place to live, work and raise kids, it's not all a rosy picture.  It found crime is a concern, most want better roads and additional events like outdoor festivals and farmer's markets.  But overall, the reviews were positive. 

Dr. Ashley Kirzinger is Director of the University of Illinois Springfield Survey Research Office which called and asked residents more than 100 quality of life questions.  She says it was surprising to find younger people have a brighter outlook for Sangamon County.