Friday, August 5, 2011


Community Bank of Oak Park River Forest presents a Champion Grant to Sister Monice of The Learning Center literacy tutoring & GED preparation program in North Lawndale.
Community Bank of Oak Park River Forest, 1001 Lake Street, Oak Park, announces that the bank’s Champion Grant is being made to The Learning Center, a free literacy tutoring service and GED preparation program located in North Lawndale. The purpose of the Champion Grant is to assist organizations in providing community outreach programs for low and moderate income individuals.
    The Learning Center is a neighborhood organization offering free education to women and men in Chicago’s North Lawndale and Little Village communities. Students of The Learning Center acquire knowledge and skills in reading, writing, math, English as a second language, and related subjects, preparing them for the GED test. It has its roots at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in River Forest and was started by parishioners and Dominican Sisters with the desire to provide social justice and assistance to the poor. The Learning Center is located at 2153 South Millard Avenue, Chicago. It is an active member of the West Side Literacy Coalition and Chicago Citywide Literacy Coalition.
    “The Learning Center provides a vital service to the Lawndale and Little Village communities. Their work epitomizes what the Champion Grant is truly about, which is providing education and training for those in need,” says Martin J. Noll, Chairman of the Board and CEO of Community Bank. A grant in the amount of $2,000 was presented to Sister Monice Kavanaugh, O.P., Executive Director of The Learning Center, on Wednesday, June 22. The Champion Grant was presented by Mary Beth McIntosh, V.P. and River Forest Branch Manager, and Bernard D. Headley II, Community Lending Specialist for Community Bank.
    Through the Champion Grant, Community Bank of Oak Park River Forest encourages growth and support in economically challenged communities. Champion Grants will be awarded to qualifying organizations throughout the year. The Champion Grant application is available on the Community Bank website at
    During its 14-year history, Community Bank has undertaken the sponsorship of many community-wide events and has donated over $2 million to various local civic and charitable organizations. Community Bank of Oak Park River Forest was organized in 1996 as a locally-owned bank focused on creating financial solutions for individuals, professionals, owners of closely-held businesses and nonprofit organizations in the Oak Park, River Forest, and Forest Park communities. Community Bank, which had assets of $351 million as of December 31, 2010, has two locations: 1001 Lake Street, Oak Park, and 7777 Lake Street, River Forest.

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