Updated: November 4, 2011 9:28AM
The Chicago Sun-Times Charity Trust is looking to shine a little light on local charities — $500,000 worth of sunshine.
As part of its annual efforts to support youth organizations dedicated to arts, education, civic engagement and literacy, the Charity Trust officially kicked off its Sun Shine Project this week, allowing readers to nominate charities to receive a chunk of the $500,000 in grants.
“We decided that in order to give back to this community in this economic environment when everything is such bad news, why don’t we create something that’s actually good news?” said Matthew Saleski, a member of the Charity Trust board of trustees and vice president of marketing and business development.
The initial nomination phase will continue through Sept. 18, during which time anyone can nominate eligible charities that focus on benefiting Chicago youth. Beginning Sept. 19, people can vote for the charities that meet the criteria once per day until Oct. 9. Afterward, the Sun-Times Charity Trust will select the grant winners and announce the results.
As of Wednesday afternoon, 16 charities have been nominated, including the Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana, Sit Stay Read and the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, Saleski said.
“We’re reaching out to youth because we want to help them reach their highest potential by targeting programs that address their needs and empower them with skills necessary to evolve into literate and responsible adults,” Saleski said.
For more information and to nominate charities, visit www.chicagosunshineproject.com.