Park Forest Preschool was selected as the recipient of a $10,000 grant by members of Centre Foundation’s Anniversary Giving Circle.  The grant will be used for facilities renovations such as replacing asbestos flooring tiles and painting, upgrades that are too expensive for the organization’s current budget to bear but necessary to help the program secure state licensure to become a Universal Pre-K site.


"Park Forest Preschool is honored to accept this award on behalf of the families, children, and staff of our program.  This award will provide essential funding for physical site repairs that are needed.  We are grateful to Centre Foundation and the Anniversary Giving Circle for their support of Park Forest Preschool,” said Barbara Geist, Director of the Park Forest Preschool.


Park Forest Preschool provides low-income families with a comprehensive preschool program that includes education, social skills, and developmental motor skills taught by qualified teachers in a friendly, safe environment.  The preschool was established over 40 years ago by the Park Forest Village United Methodist Church.   

Over 90 people gathered at the Mountain View Country Club on September 2nd for the annual reception of Centre Foundation’s Anniversary Giving Circle.  The giving circle was established in 2006 as part of Centre Foundation’s 25th anniversary celebration.  Since then, it has distributed over $80,000 in grants and grown in popularity.  This year, 26 new members joined the giving circle, allowing the runner-up organizations to also receive grants.


“I’m happy to announce that Discovery Space and Schlow Library will each receive a $2,000 grant due to the expanded membership and generosity of our Anniversary Giving Circle members,” announced Molly Kunkel, Executive Director of Centre Foundation.


This year, the membership nominated local organizations that work in the fields of Education and Lifelong Learning.  Members then ranked the nominations and the top three were asked to attend the reception to present their unique grant ideas before the full membership. 

Molly Hetrick and Cathi Alloway were on hand to represent Schlow Library.  Allayn Beck and Michele Crowl presented on behalf of Discovery Space.  There was also a brief presentation by last year’s recipient, Centre Volunteers in Medicine, about how their grant for women’s health services has been used over the past year.  Dr. Kristine Charles and Cheryl White relayed that report.


Previous recipients of Anniversary Giving Circle grant include House of Care, Discovery Space, Housing Transitions, Strawberry Fields, Park Forest Preschool, Interfaith Mission, and the Community Help Centre.


More information about this program is available at


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