The Orthopedic Center of Illinois Foundation (OCIF) has announced that Hope was selected to receive a $20,000 grant as the beneficiary of the 20th Annual OCIF Open: Chip in fore Charity. The grant will be funded through proceeds from the OCIF annual golf outing scheduled for September 25th at Panther Creek Country Club and will support Hope in providing accessible and inclusive recreation opportunities to strengthen and support health and fitness for children with autism and other developmental disabilities in central Illinois.

“The OCI Foundation is celebrating our 20th annual golf outing this year and we’re so grateful that our event continues to be a success,” said OCIF Board President Tim VanFleet, MD. “We are proud to once again contribute $20,000 to such a worthy organization as Hope.”

Over the years, Hope has become more than a school. It is leading the development of new methods to educate, treat and care for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders and other developmental disabilities. Their programs include The Hope Learning Academies, The Autism Clinic at Hope, Therapy Relief at Hope, The Illinois Crisis Prevention Network, The Autism Program of Illinois, and Wrentham Therapeutic Services.

“We are incredibly grateful for this generous gift from OCI Foundation to fund Hope-a-palooza and other recreational activities for our students at the Hope Learning Academy,” said Clint Paul, Hope’s CEO. “At Hope, inclusion is at the forethought of everything we do. An event like Hope-a-palooza is one of the ways we promote our mission of inclusion in the community.”

“At Hope, part of the continuum of care we provide is ensuring that our students have opportunities to interact in the community,” said Amanda Brott, Hope’s COO and Executive Director of the Hope Learning Academy. “Not only does this promote inclusion, but it also ensures that our students are learning independence, basic life skills, and social skills in a safe, supportive environment. This helps to set them up for success when they transition into adulthood.”

This year marks the 20th Chip in fore Charity and to date, OCIF has granted over $400,000 to Springfield area organizations. Past grant recipients include: Central Illinois Fellowship of Christian Athletes (2022), Lincoln Land Community College Foundation (2021), Springfield Zoological Society (2020), YMCA of Springfield (2019), Girl Scouts of Central Illinois (2018), Compass for Kids (2017), Special Olympics (2016), ThinkFirst (2015), Illinois Senior Olympics (2014), genHkids (2013), Springfield Sharefest (2012) and Camp Care-A-Lot (2011).

For more information on the OCI Foundation or to be a sponsor at this year’s event, please visit the OCIF website: or call (217) 547-9100.