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Mini Golf


Didn't make it to mini golf, big change? You missed a fantastic night of food, mini golf, and fun that helped raise $2000 for groups working for racial, social and economic justice in Chicago!

Check out the photos below. Want to buy a mini golf, big change T-Shirt for $15? Contact

mini golf, big change 2011 photos

Thu, Aug 18, 2011

Sheila O'DonnellI’ve been raising money since I sold sweet and sour lollipops in junior high school, for the travel expenses of my debate team…which means that I’ve been a grassroots fundraiser for over twenty years.  About a decade ago I learned about Kim Klein and the Grassroots Fundraising Journal, both an incredible resource for grassroots fundraisers (seriously, if you want to raise money for anything and you don’t have a subscription to the Grassroots Fundraising Journal, get one, you will NOT be sorry). 

Kim Klein is a fundraising guru.  She helped professionalize the field of grassroots fundraising and she played a big role in demystifying fundraising, shedding light on the fact that fundraising is likely something we’ve all engaged in and no, it isn’t just asking your local millionaire for a $2 million gift so that their name can go on a plaque in the bathroom.

What’s interesting about Kim is that she’s taken a real turn in the last couple of years.  Her writing and actions have increasingly focused on increasing revenue to the government, advocating that the government to take back some of the work that has been slowly taken over by non-profits.  Kim wrote this article in January, but it seems particularly interesting given the discussion that’s been happening at the federal level about cutting services and maintaining tax cuts for the wealthy.  In this article, she makes a strong case for getting rid, or at least modifying, tax benefits for charitable giving.  What do folks think about that?  What is the role of non-profits in this conversation?

Kim Klein isn't the only person weighing in on the subject. Read what consultant Kelly Kleinman has to say on the subject, and check out Warren Buffet's recent thought provoking New York Times editorial about taxes and the super-rich.

Wed, Aug 17, 2011



Each summer, the same cycle repeats itself: as the temperatures rise, crime statistics also increase, bringing with them news coverage and community responses that often expose and inflame the deep racial and class divisions in Chicago.

A series of violent clashes over the last few months in Lakeview have sparked heated community meetings and online discussions. Although the responses have been as diverse as the LGBTQ community itself, some individuals have blamed the recent attacks on LGBTQ youth of color, and have gone so far as to call for social services for queer youth to be shut down in the neighborhood. The situation is complicated, but youth are not the problem.

Crossroads Fund was the first foundation to support LGBTQ activism in Chicago. We were the first funder of Gay Horizons, which many years later went on to become the Center on Halsted. And many of our grantees are led by LGBTQ people of color, particularly youth. As a long time funder of LGBTQ issues and concerns, we wanted to take this opportunity to showcase the responses of some of our grantee organizations and their members to this conflict, and insure that their voices are considered as the LGBTQ community works for a resolution to the recent conflicts.

Lakeview Action Coalition:

Lakeview Action Coalition members are very concerned about violence that has already occurred, and the violence that could be caused by individuals spewing hateful and racist statements.  These statements could lead to hate crimes against youth and the targeting of youth by the police. 

While we work with the police, agencies, neighbors and the alderman on creative solutions to dealing with crimes on Halsted street, we need to recognize that violence is a citywide issue.   We must look at the overall causes, like cuts in youth jobs and lack of investment in communities across Chicago. We need to protect everyone’s safety in our community, including the safety of youth of color.  We need more services in our community for vulnerable populations, not less. 

Aisha Truss-Miller, Youth Program Coordinator, Affinity Community Services:

“One of the main issues is economic disparity and the allocation of resources. Since Lakeview is one of the neighborhoods in the city with a lot of resources, that’s why people flock to Lakeview, regardless if they exude negative behavior or not. There’s an attraction to that community, to tourists, to other people within the city.

One solution around safety is making sure that communities outside of Lakeview have adequate resources for young people to tap into. Everyone is noticing that there is economic disparity over our city and certain resources are lacking in certain neighborhoods and there is no kind of connection to different neighborhoods like Lakeview to Englewood – Lakeview to Humboldt Park. All the queer focused youth resources are in Lakeview, like that’s the only place that young queer people are. [Because] most of the funding for queer youth goes to Lakeview, then that’s the core youth that’s going to go." 

The Illinois Safe Schools Alliance youth committee, Board, staff and volunteers:

In the wake of well-publicized violence in Lakeview, the launch of the group ‘Take Back Boystown’, and the vitriolic CAPS meeting that garnered the attention of every major local media outlet, it is time for the community to push past the two-sided rhetoric of shouted insults and boos to uncover the complex, sensitive and difficult threads at work in both the violence itself and the reactions to it.

At the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance (the Alliance), a youth organizing group committed to ensuring Illinois schools fully address sexual orientation and gender identity, we are committed to participating in a process that seeks to surface the issues of ageism, racism, classism and transphobia inherent in the violence and community reactions.  We propose a format where individuals and organizations that are committed to community dialogue on these issues come together with middle and high school-aged youth and young adult voices being central.  This process must include youth, young adults, Lakeview residents and community-based organizations, queer organizations of color, youth-led organizations, LGBT community centers and businesses, and transgender and gender-variant focused organizations.  Read full statement…

Ahkia, Gender Just Member:

“One solution would be to get the community involved. If the community is so threatened they should get to know the youth. They should get out there and stop depending on the police to do everything, because they don’t come all the time, so we stop depending on them. Why don’t you guys change it? We’ll go out with you and patrol. Get to know our faces so that you know that when we are around it’s not like that.

Get to know the people who aren’t causing trouble, because it’s not all of us. Put that money into the youth programs, into the youth shelter, into creating jobs for youth, into something that is productive and empowering instead of so oppressing.”

Fri, Jul 29, 2011

Mini Golf Invite

Come on out for the fifth annual mini golf, big change!
a miniature golf outing to benefit Crossroads Fund.
Play a round of mini golf and support social justice in Chicago!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011*
6 – 9 p.m.
Diversey Mini Golf Course 141 W. Diversey Parkway, in Lincoln Park
This location is wheelchair accessible.

Great prizes for top golfers!
Food and refreshments!
$20 at the door

For more information call the Crossroads Fund office at 773.226.7676
or e-mail

Host Committee: Gary Arnold, Jeff Edwards, Emmanuel Garcia, John Hassey, Barbara Kemmis, Kristina Roque, Shelly Ruzicka, Mairita Smiltars, Gilberto Villaseñor, Rachel Wallis

* Rain date August 17. In the event of rain, Crossroads Fund will send a notice to all ticket purchasers and our listserve of an alternate rain date.

Thank you to our generous sponsors!

McAlpine Consulting for Growth

Uptown Bikes 

 Woke Up Black

Big Delicious Planet

Thu, Jul 07, 2011


Jeanne KracherHere at Crossroads Fund, we love hearing about the campaigns and victories of our grantees, who are working to build racial, social, and economic justice in Chicago. But we realize that those stories don’t always reach a wider audience, outside of the individuals directly involved with the issue. When our grantees do make it into the news, we know that the headlines often do not examine the complexities of the issues or how the real story is unfolding.

That’s why we’re excited about our new website and this blog. Over the next year, we’ll use this site as a forum to present interviews and profiles of our grantees and the movements they are a part of. We will tell these stories through video, audio, photos, interviews, and blog posts. We will create a lot of this content ourselves, and we welcome contributions from our grantees, board members, and guest bloggers.

And hard as it is to believe, I will be blogging here as well. That’s right, they’ve forced me onto the internets, where I will periodically try not to go on too long about this and that. All I can say is it sure beats handing out five thousand leaflets!

So keep your eyes peeled to the website and our Facebook Page, and contact if you have an idea or suggestion for the blog.

Wed, Jul 06, 2011