November 20, 2023
Contact: Judith Cebula
317.916.7327 |

Endowment Makes Grants to Immigrant Serving Organizations


INDIANAPOLIS – Lilly Endowment Inc. has approved $11 million in grants to help human services organizations working in Indianapolis strengthen their ability to serve immigrants from low-income households as they acclimate to life in central Indiana and make progress toward self-sufficiency.

The 19 grants, which range from $250,000 to $1 million, are funding a variety of organizations committed to helping Indianapolis continue to be a welcoming city for immigrants. They include faith-based organizations, such as Catholic Charities and Shepherd Community Center; neighborhood multi-service centers, such as Hawthorne Community Center, La Plaza and Fay Biccard Glick Neighborhood Center; healthcare organizations, such as Eskenazi Health Foundation and HealthNet; and organizations dedicated to serving immigrant communities, such as the Burmese American Community Institute and Exodus Refugee Immigration.

The Endowment has made a $1 million grant to the Immigrant Welcome Center (IWC), which strives to connect immigrants to resources as they adapt to life in their new community and educate community stakeholders on best practices to welcome immigrant neighbors. The grant will fund IWC efforts to provide technical assistance, consulting, training and convening opportunities to other organizations receiving grants. IWC will use part of its grant to fund capacity building at additional, grassroots immigrant-serving organizations.

The three-year grants are designed to help organizations adapt their programs as they respond to the growing number of immigrants in Indianapolis.  During the last decade, the foreign-born population of Indianapolis has grown by 30 percent, according to the most recent U.S. Census data. Many have fled challenging circumstances in their native countries and are seeking better lives for themselves and their families. Among the most pressing challenges they face in acclimating to their new community include English language acquisition, achieving legal status, enrolling in school, securing employment and obtaining health services.

The organizations’ efforts will include enhancing English-language learning and job readiness programs; building the capacity of legal services to meet growing demand for counsel related to securing and maintaining legal status, including documentation necessary for housing, employment and school enrollment; and hiring new and training existing staff to better meet the needs of immigrant clients.

“A growing number of immigrants seek to make Indianapolis their home,” said Ronni Kloth, the Endowment’s vice president for community development.  “We are pleased to support these organizations as they build their capacity to help our city continue to be a place that is welcoming and livable for all its residents.”

The following Indianapolis organizations are receiving grants in this pilot immigrant services initiative:

Burmese American Community Institute  |  $500,000
Catholic Charities of Indianapolis  |  $1 million
Christamore House  |  $250,000
Community Alliance of the Far Eastside (CAFE)  |  $500,000
Concord Neighborhood Center  |  $250,000
Eskenazi Health Foundation  |  $1 million
Exodus Refugee Immigration  |  $1 million
Fay Biccard Glick Neighborhood Center at Crooked Creek  |  $500,000
Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana  |  $500,000
Hawthorne Community Center  |  $500,000
Healthnet  |  $750,000
Immigrant Welcome Center  |  $1 million
Indiana Legal Services  |  $600,000
La Plaza  |  $1 million
Heartland Alliance for Human Needs & Human Rights (National Immigrant Justice Center)  |  $300,000
Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic  |  $600,000
Raphael Health Center  |  $250,000
Shepherd Community Center  |  $250,000
Southeast Community Services  |  $250,000

About Lilly Endowment Inc.
Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based, private created in 1937 by J. K. Lilly and his sons, Eli and J.K. Jr., through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Company. While those gifts remain the financial bedrock of the Endowment, the Endowment is a separate entity from the company, with a distinct governing board, staff and location. In keeping with its founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, education, and religion, and it maintains a special commitment to its hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana.