Rock Island, Ill. (Sept. 1, 2023) – Royal Neighbors of America, a fraternal benefit society in Rock Island, Ill. presented three Quad City (QCA) nonprofits with Nation of Neighbors℠ empowerment awards and grants this August.
A membership organization with more than 250,000 members nationwide, Royal Neighbors of America offers life insurance and annuity products to its members and is driven by its mission of supporting women and serving communities. Royal Neighbors’ signature women’s empowerment program, Nation of Neighbors recognizes and supports women who work to empower women and girls through a nonprofit, business, or program. Nation of Neighbors recipients are nominated by Royal Neighbors members and are influential leaders who exemplify their “neighbor-helping-neighbor” mission of community service.
QC recipients of Royal Neighbors’ 2023 Nation of Neighbors $10,000 Award and Grant included:
Ann Schwickerath is the Executive Director of Project Renewal in Davenport. Project Renewal provides after-school and summer programming for youth in kindergarten through 12th grade. “We have children that are with us for every grade,” shared
Ann. “It allows us to build deep, trusting relationships that can last a lifetime.”
The Nation of Neighbors grant will help purchase the furnishings needed for the new health and wellness center and enhance current programs. “We are growing in a good and cautious way,” shared Ann. “Every generous donation builds more opportunities for our youth.”
Linda Lannan is the Project Manager at The Clothing Center at Minnie's Maison. The Clothing Center is a 501(c)3 corporation run entirely by volunteers to provide free clothing to anyone in need. Linda serves alongside 30 core volunteers and many seasonal helpers. “I am most proud of the strength and kindness of our volunteers,” said Linda. “Every volunteer has personal tragedies and challenges they face, and they still give so graciously.”
The clothing center frequently responds to emergency clothing requests for children placed into foster care, local students, and families with immediate needs. They plan to use the Nation of Neighbors grant to magnify the support and assistance provided for these emergency requests.
Gloria Mancilla is the Founder and Executive Director of Casa Guadalupe in Davenport. Inspired by her faith and desire to serve her Hispanic community, Gloria launched a monthly food pantry at St. Anthony’s Church which serves around 40 families each month.
Gloria plans to use the Nation of Neighbors grant to expand the food pantry and create Casa Guadalupe – a nonprofit community resource center with a mission to support individuals regardless of their legal status and background. “During the winter months, we see a significant increase in the families we serve,” said Gloria. “This grant will help us serve more families and respond to the increased need in the colder months.”
“Each of these women are servants to their community, truly exemplifying the Royal Neighbors mission to empower women and serve communities,” said Royal Neighbors Director of Philanthropy Amy Jones.
“With their passion and leadership, these women are creating a ripple effect of women’s empowerment in the Quad Cities,” said Royal Neighbors CEO and President Zarifa Reynolds. “They understand the long-term impact of bolstering their community. It doesn’t just impact our neighbors today, it creates a better tomorrow,” she added. “It is our honor and privilege to recognize them for possessing faith, courage, unselfishness, endurance, and humility, which are the five core values of Royal Neighbors.” To date, Royal Neighbors has awarded more than $2.5 million in Nation of Neighbors grants nationwide.
About Royal Neighbors of America
Royal Neighbors was founded in 1895 as a membership organization by nine pioneering women who recognized the need to insure the lives of women and children. Now, with more than 250,000 members nationwide, Royal Neighbors of America offers life insurance and annuity products to its members and is driven by its mission of supporting women and serving communities. The organization’s employees, members, and chapters across the country drive the mission through localized volunteerism and philanthropy programs making social impact the cornerstone of their work. In 2020, Royal Neighbors was upgraded to “A Excellent” (3rd highest out of 13) by the AM Best Company for overall financial strength and ability to meet ongoing obligations to certificate holders. The rating was affirmed as of November 30, 2021 and once again in 2022. In 2022, Royal Neighbors delivered $24.5 million in social good, record revenue and received an all-time high score from the Great Place to Work® employee survey, achieving their sixth Great Place to Work Certification. For more information about Royal Neighbors of America, go to royalneighbors.org.
Marie Young, Manager, Communications
Marie.Young@royalneighbors.org | (309) 732-8280