Our Impact

Elevating Education in Elmhurst

Since 1989… your support has resulted in over $2 million in educational enhancements for the Elmhurst Public Schools.

We flood our schools with innovative resources to ensure engaged learning at all levels across the district.  

In response to the the COVID-19 outbreak, Foundation 205 launched its Community Response Fund to rapidly deploy flexible resources in three critical areas:

  1. Food security for D205 students & their families
  2. Elearning resources & materials
  3. D205 family support and gap funding

The strength & generosity of the Elmhurst community was overwhelming. Foundation 205's Community Response Fund has raised over $120,000 and allowed us to make the following grants to support our students and their families:

1. $20,000 to the United Community Concerns Association (UCCA) to provide gift cards to D205 families who need help to purchase daily essentials.

2. $10,000 to the Yorkfield Food Pantry to provide weekly care packages for families April-May.  As well as host 3 mobile food pantries in partnership with the Northern Illinois Food Bank to provide food to 725 families.

3. $15,000 to the Elmhurst Walk-In Assistance Network to support emergency relief to Elmhurst families in financial crisis.

4. $9,500 to local restaurants to provide 2,150 meals to 790 students during the week of Spring Break when D205 food service was not available.

5. $5,000 to the District 205 Student Services department to provide Elmhurst students experiencing homelessness with emergency food relief.

6. $15,000 to support the costs associated with providing emergency support to D205 students experiencing economic hardships.

7. $45,000 to support educational needs across the buildings to enhance and expand learning in both hybrid and remote learning settings.


Foundation 205 received a very generous donation from the Elmhurst community group 100+ Women Who Care this February to support York's Duke Depot. This program exists to provide personal items, school supplies, and clothing for students that need assistance. These funds will also help York's Student Council to provide identified new  students with a backpack containing school supplies and book store gift  card. The number of students requiring support for these basic needs continues to grow, and this donation will provide help several years out so that students can come prepared and ready to engage in their education.









How do YOU describe 2020 in one word? 


Foundation 205 experienced 2020 with these very same words in positive, healthy, and compassionate ways:

UNPRECEDENTED:  Through the unprecedented generosity of supportive people and business partners in our community,  Foundation 205 raised $200,000 at our February Gala at Medinah Country Club to fund innovation in education in D205!  In May, we awarded over $130,000 in Thiems grants to educators who brought us proposals with ideas, strategies and programs to use innovative resources to deliver an exceptional learning experience and environment for all D205 students! 

Within Reach Gala 2020 provided funding for 18 Thiems grants.

SURREAL:  The lightning quick response from the Elmhurst community to a call for support through the Community Response Fund can only be described as surreal.  When COVID-19 upended our lives in March, overwhelming needs of Elmhurst families and the D205 community surfaced practically overnight.  The Community Response Fund instantly raised $120,000 from generous donors to address immediate health, safety and educational needs of Elmhurst students and families.  This initiative helped us re-imagine our local businesses partnerships and set the stage for creating new models.  Simultaneously, we grew support for Foundation 205 and infused nearly $30,000 back into our local small business economy with our year-end Teacher Impact Award gift card program

The Community Response Fund rapidly deployed resources throughout Elmhurst.

CHALLENGING: Through our Holiday Tree project, Foundation 205 sold over 2100 holiday trees - a record number! - to decorate Elmhurst yards, streets and avenues, raising over $20,000!  This gloves-on, strength-testing, roll-up-your-sleeves campaign is most challenging and can only succeed with the extraordinary gifts of treasure from our customers and volunteers and flexing of muscles by so many people and groups, including York Hockey, York Football, and middle school students from D205 and Visitation.

Volunteers delivered holiday joy to families & neighbors across Elmhurst.

RELENTLESS:  This pandemic did not let up for a moment.  Our “We’re All In” campaign in the fall proved that our contributors  - generous individuals and strong business partners - are equally relentless in their advocacy for student-centered priorities in a D205 education and always. #ELMHURSTSTRONG!

2020 Grants are already in use and helping students expand & accelerate their learning.

2019-2020 Impact

 $133,000 in Thiems Grants awards
  • Ten elementary school grants, including five designated for all eight schools
  • Four grants to benefit all 3 middle schools
  • Four grants for York High School
  • Click here for complete list of grants
$15,000 to provide technology access for students during e-Learning

With the abrupt shift to eLearning in the Spring of 2020, some students did not have devises or  wi-fi service at home.  Foundation 205 funded the purchase of 50 wi-fi hotspots and 750 Chromebook charges to ensure all students had access to the equipment necessary to continue their education.

$15,000 for additional learning and instructional time for Elementary students 

Six elementary schools offered the Foundation 205's Study Skills Program during the 2019-2020 academic year. Certified staff serve as program coordinators & teachers to help third through fifth grade students with specific academic content and executive function. Programs held before and after school, or during lunch/recess.

$3,500 to support thrive d205 

Foundation 205 is strongly committed supporting the start of a community conversation and create plans to better understand, support and reduce the stress levels among students in our school community.  Foundation 205 was a lead sponsor for Julie Lythcott-Haims' keynote address and the showing of the movie Angst in the fall of 2019.

$50,000 to support the York Business incubator program

Launched in the Fall of 2019, this program is an  opportunity for York students to envision, create,  pitch and launch a business idea.  With the support of York staff and outside community business mentors, these students get a real-life experience with becoming an entrepreneur.  Foundation 205 provided a grant for all technology equipment in the Incubator lab.  

$80,000 to support the York High School Manufacturing Lab

Foundation 205 has provided funding to purchase two manual lathes and two manual mills for the new Manufacturing Lab.  Students will be able to utilize the lab starting this year, and beginning in Fall of 2020, the lab will be a key component of the new manufacturing pathway offered at York.