Local Arts Organization vying in national grant competition

staff writer

CAMBRIDGE, Illinois—Local arts and culture organization Crossroads Cultural Connections is competing in a nationwide grant-making and crowdfunding initiative called “A Community Thrives”, presented by the Gannett Foundation. A Community Thrives offers a platform to get neighbors, friends, family, and peers excited to support community-building ideas, and, for organizations that raise a minimum of $3,000 over the course of the competition, a chance at over $2,000,000 in grants to help get ideas off the ground.

Beginning as a grassroots effort in 2014 and formally becoming a 501(c)3 in late 2021, Crossroads Cultural Connections, is a non-profit organization serving Henry County, Illinois and the surrounding area dedicated to the growth and vitality of the region through the celebration of the arts and culture.

“We have learned making connections between people and groups has a tendency to create win-win scenarios, not only benefiting those within the connected sphere, but also the fabric of our communities at large. Through making and fostering connections between artists, individuals, organizations, and businesses, the fabric of our communities can change, for the better!”, says founding member Jason Bates.

The organization’s core programming is focused on providing free, family-friendly concerts and bringing visiting artists into schools for workshops, activities, and all-school assemblies and, in the long-term, building the capacity of the organization and area to make live music, arts, and culture a regular part of life indefinitely.

John Taylor, board president says, “Whether the $3,000 minimum is met or the organization is selected for a grant or not, your donations will help fund programs like the one we are currently working on which will bring the Malawian duo (Yobu and Yosefe) known as Madalitso Band to the area.

To donate as part of this grant competition please visit:

To learn more about Crossroads Cultural Connections, ways to get involved, and see the event calendar visit or the group’s Facebook page at