2013 Example Grantees

While the Elizabeth Morse Genius Charitable Trust values all of its grantees equally, the Trust features this year the following organizations that submitted exemplary grant applications.

Each of the grantees featured here successfully and convincingly established a strong connection to one or more tenets of the Trust's Values Statement, achieved or exceeded its goals, and had a positive and significant impact on the community it serves.

The Trust (identified below as "EMGT") features one exemplary grantee for each tenet of its Values Statements, along with two organizations that the Trust supported jointly with its sister trust, The Elizabeth Morse Charitable Trust (identified below as "EMT").

The Trust's Value Statements

Tenet 1

Promoting "THISS"

Promoting, instilling, and/or reflecting the values of individual and/or organizational thrift, humility, industry, self-sacrifice, and/or self-sufficiency.

The CARA Program

Purpose of grant

The CARA Program focuses on transforming lives by providing the skills and motivation necessary to successfully match jobs with individuals affected by homelessness and poverty.  EMGT has support The CARA program for over ten years.  Through its dedication to guiding individuals through a process, which leads to self-reliance and self-sacrifice, The CARA program aligns with EMGT's first tenet.

Amount of grant

$50,000.00 in 2013 for general operating support

Tenet 2

Relieving Human Suffering

Relieving human suffering by: (1) performing research and/or promoting education regarding the treatment of disease; (2) assisting youth who are from disadvantaged backgrounds, have troubled childhoods, have physical or mental disabilities, or experience emotional disorders; (3) addressing the concerns of the elderly; and/or (4) providing succor to humankind during time of natural or human-made disaster.

Reading in Motion

Purpose of grant

EMGT has provided multiple grants over many years to support Benchmarks, Reading in Motion's ("RIM") arts based reading program.  The 2011 grant (a four year, $1.2 million grant: $1 million to expand RIM into Area One with Chicago Public Schools and $200,000 for continued support for the Benchmark's program) is the largest in RIM's history.  RIM aligns with EMGT's second tenet by providing education to youth from troubled backgrounds or with emotional disorders.

Amount of grant

$262,500.00 in 2013

Tenet 3

Developing Individual Self-Esteem and Dignity

Developing within individuals, especially youth from under-served and/or under-resourced communities, a sense of self-esteem and dignity.

DePaul University

Purpose of grant

EMGT's most recent grant provides summer stipends for disadvantaged students actively engaged in research with a faculty member, predominantly in health-related projects in biology.  Funding from EMGT has extended scholarships to youth who would otherwise not have access to this field of study.  The long range plan of the program is to increase the diversity of young people pursuing science as a career.  By providing the additional experience with science, DePaul fosters individual self-esteem and dignity within students that allows them to continue on into scientific careers.

Amount of grant

$50,000.00 in 2013

Tenet 4

Encouraging Vigorous Athletic Activity

Encouraging vigorous athletic activity, leading to physical health and/or spiritual well-being.

Girls in the Game

Purpose of grant

For over tens years EMGT has funded Girls in the Game, which promotes the overall well-being of girls through sports and fitness opportunities.  With funding from EMGT and strong programming, Girls in the Game has remained a stable organization providing quality sports and fitness activities to Chicago's girls, thereby developing physical health and spiritual well-being through vigorous athletic activity.

Amount of grant

$10,000.00 in 2012

Tenet 5

Developing Regional Solutions to Chicago's Regional Challenges

Developing regional solutions to Chicago’s regional challenges, thereby protecting and/or improving the quality of life for all its citizens.

Metropolis Strategies

Purpose of grant

In 1999 The Commercial Club of Chicago created Chicago Metropolis 2020 ("CM"), an organization with The Chicago Community Trust ("CCT") as fiscal agent, to help maintain the Chicago region as a place where people want to reside and work and have the opportunity to succeed.  CM was a civic organization that was business-led. Originally, CM was suppoed to terminate in December 2010 after the Burnham Plan Centennial; however, it was decided in early 2011 that the effort should continue as a new entity, Metropolis Strategies ("MS").  EMGT's multi-year support began with efforts to modernize and enhance the regions freight infrastructure.  Support then allowed CM to help create CMAP, and organize and administer the Burnham Centennial celebration.  EMGT's current multi-year grant is helping the organization continue as it evolved from a time-terminated entity into an independent non-profit agency associated with the CCT.

Amount of grant

$250,00000 in 2012

Joint Grantees

Tenet 1, 2, and 3

Promoting "THISS," relieving human suffering, and fostering self-esteem and dignity

Chicago High School for the Arts Logo

The Chicago High School for the Arts

Purpose of grant

EMT and EMGT convened the Diversity Working Group ("DWG"), a group of representatives from music-performance and educational organizations, in 2004 with the long range purpose being to develop mechanisms to promote greater diversity at Chicago's performing arts organizations. DWG discovered that while Chicago had a strong set of non-profit arts organizations serving under-resourced schools, the city was the only major urban center in the country that did not have a public high school for the arts. In 2006 EMT/EMGT supported planning through grants to The Chicago Community Trust as the DWG evolved into a larger project to create Chicago's first public high school for the arts, now known as The Chicago High School for the Arts ("ChiArts"), which is an Illinois not for profit corporation. The Chicago Public School ("CPS") Board awarded a contract to ChiArts to operate a public high school for the arts in 2007, which is also when EMGT supported more planning for ChiArts. ChiArts opened for the first school year in 2009. EMGT supported a fundraising consultant as part of a matching challenge in 2009. In 2010 and 2011, EMGT funded general operating support while ChiArts created a working capital fund. EMT supported ChiArts with two (one single year and one multi-year) grants for the arts portion of the school programming not covered by support from CPS. EMT/EMGT's participation in the founding of ChiArts has had a great impact on the organization's self-sufficiency and industry. ChiArts has successfully leveraged EMT/EMGT's grants into a strong fundraising agenda for the sustainability of the school. At this time ChiArts has admitted four years of students and graduated its first class of seniors. The 600 students currently enrolled come from every ward in the city and represent the diversity of Chicago.

Amount of grant


Tenet 1 and 3

Promoting "THISS" and fostering self-esteem and dignity

Lyric Opera of Chicago

Lyric Opera

Purpose of grant

EMT/EMGT have funded Lyric Opera since 1999. Every year since 2003, EMT funded a production either jointly with EMGT or alone. Along with providing production sponsorship support, The Trust has focused on assisting Lyric in diversifying its Board of Directors beginning in 2006. This focus expanded in 2010 to include diversification of the Boards of Lyric's auxiliary organizations. Because the EMT/EMGT grants to Lyric affect the Board and therefore the entire constituency and culture of the organization, the grants are considered more than just productionsponsorship. By increasing diversity in the organization, Lyric will be practicing self-sufficiency and industry.

Amount of grant


Elizabeth Morse Genius Charitable Trust

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