Lightfoot awards $10 million in Neighborhood Opportunity Fund grants

Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Monday $10 million in Neighborhood Opportunity Fund grants were being awarded to 27 Chicago entrepreneurs.

The finalists include a shared kitchen in Greater Grand Crossing, a dance studio in Calumet Heights, and a juice bar in Humboldt Park.

Individual grants range from $49,000 to $1.7 million. They mark the second round of grants awarded since Lightfoot took office and has worked with the Invest South/West initiative program.

The announcement was made at the DuSable Museum of African American History.


The goal of the grant is to support business along commercial corridors on the South, West, and Southwest sides.

Finalists were chosen by an evaluation committee based on factors including location and viability of the project; applicant experience; completeness of the proposal; and the needs of the surrounding neighborhood.

"Our businesses, especially those that are small and are owned by people in underrepresented communities, are truly the backbone of our city," said Lightfoot.