The Nineteenth Century Club & The Nineteenth Century Charitable Association - Learning and Giving: Our Focus

Charitable Service to the Community

Since its beginnings in 1891, the members of the Nineteenth Century Charitable Association/Nineteenth Century Club have chosen to be involved in service to the community, whether that community was around the corner or far beyond the borders of Oak Park. We have adapted our commitment with the needs of people through the Depression, recessions, and wars. Nonprofit organizations requesting our support to benefit the community and the type of services needed have changed many times in the past 118 years; a short background of our current focus is below.

More about our long Charitable Service History.

Educational and Cultural Programs/Services - We provide affordable informative and cultural programs for the enrichment and benefit of our community. These include weekly programs every Monday, October to April and a special children's program every Spring. Recently we added a series of contra dances (line dancing with a live caller and live music).

Benevolence Trust - The Benevolence Trust, established in 1964, provides grants to local non-profit charitable organizations in our communities. For 2010-11, the Nineteenth Century Charitable Association supported the agencies listed in the column to the left. Each year, we sponsor several Fundraisers to generate income for the Trust. Proceeds from these activities are distributed in October at the annual President's Tea.

Founders' Memorial Scholarship - Established on our 60th Anniversary in 1951, the Founders' Memorial Scholarships aid young women who are or have been students at Oak Park-River Forest High School to obtain a college education. A Scholarship Trust Fund was created in 1953.  Four freshman scholarships are awarded annually amongst the many applications received by the Scholarship Committee. Scholarships may be renewed by recipients for the next three years, so there are generally 16 active scholarship awards each year.

The Margaret R. Houck Nursing Scholarship, was instituted in 1999.

Each year, a fund raising luncheon and bridge tournament generates income for the Founders' Memorial Scholarship. In 2011 English Country Dancing started contributing to Scholarships too.

Scholarship Bridge is an activity which offers everyone the chance to improve their game, compete in bridge tournaments and make great friends. Best of all, taking part in the group helps benefit the Founders' Memorial Scholarship Fund, which yearly aids young women graduates of Oak Park-River Forest High School in obtaining a college education.

Grant Application Process

Click here for an application form.  ALL scholarship applications are handled through the Deans' office at Oak Park-River Forest High School and are available to applicants at the start of second semester. The applications have all the information concerning deadlines, money available, etc.