GIS enjoys giving back to our community! And here is a chance for you to team up with us! GIS is excited to announce our new Referral Program! It’s easy and no hassle, all you have to do is refer a friend, neighbor, family member, coworker, business owner or anyone else. Once they contact us for a free review GIS will donate $25 to one of the organizations of your choice whether we earn their business or not.



Local organizations include:

Itasca County Historical Society

What is the role of the Itasca County Historical Society’s museum in community; “It as an amenity that improves the quality of life for the residents and ma

kes them glad they live where they do. We may not be streets or water/sewer or law enforcement, but we help make our community one that people can be proud to call home.” ’Itasca County Historical Society’s (ICHS) mission is to connect people to the history of Itasca County. ICHS is celebrating its 70 the birthday in 2018. Our newest exhibit is the 100th Anniversary of the picture GRACE. A donation of a model train set depicting the towns of Nashwauk and Cooley in the 1940’s is a big hit with everyone that comes through the door. We welcome everyone to explore their ancestors on in the Karjala Genealogy and History Research Center, and tour the museum.

Web Site: Itasca County Historical Society

Caring Fore Kids

A fund held at Grand Itasca Foundation.  Proceeds from the Caring Fore Kids fund annually help expand, develop and enhance pediatric care for kids at Grand Itasca Clinic & Hospital.  

Caring Fore Kids was established in 2014 and has funded over $160,000 in new tools, equipment, programs and services for kids at Grand Itasca in just 4 short years.  What this fund does is invests in equipment that can help our already incredible staff better care for kids in our community.  Caring Fore Kids has funded everything from the latest and greatest technology in our Women’s Health and Birth Departments purchasing new infant warmers and vital sign monitors for our newest patients.  This is technology that is $20,000 per piece of equipment or more!  Caring Fore Kids dollars have also funded new décor and bright colored stickers for pediatric patient rooms in the clinic and other small tools that our nurses have requested to help brighten up the clinical space and help support a friendly environment when little kids come here to see their doctor.  These $500 projects are to enhance the patient experience here at Grand Itasca.  This fund has also purchased thou

sands of dollars in new equipment for our pediatric rehab team giving them the latest and greatest in new tools, toys, training programs and equipment that can help all of their kids in rehab stay engaged during their multiple appointments.  We have been able to purchase pediatric walkers and various kinds of bikes for these kids as many of our kids in rehab, their dreams are to either walk on their own or ride their own bike and this special equipment that we have been able to purchase are stepping stones for them to work on here at Grand Itasca to build their strength in order to go home and ride their own bike or walk and run with their siblings!  We have the most wonderful stories from our physical therapists, speech therapists and occupational therapists how these tools have completely changed how they can support their patients during their appointments.  This is our motivation to continue to fundraise!

Website: Caring Fore Kids



Bridges Kinship Mentoring

Brief history:


Bridges began as an outreach program of the Community Presbyterian Church in Grand Rapids.  Its name was North Country Bridges Mentoring. The “Bridges” concept came from the poem that refers to building a bridge for youth.


Age range of children served expanded from just middle school to include all children ages 5 through 17.  Expanded geographic region to be all of Itasca County.

Applied for 501c3 non-profit status and was accepted.

Became an affiliate of Kinship Inc., a network of mentoring programs in the Midwest.  Thus, changed our name to Bridges: Kinship Mentoring.


Started the Student Mentoring Program in collaboration with the Itasca County Family YMCA and the Grand Rapids School District.  High school students “mentor” 3rd and 4th grade students in a supervised, after-school activity setting.


Greenway Student Mentoring is added and Grand Rapids Student Mentoring expands to include all elementary schools in the district.


In the fall of 2003, the Lunch Buddies program begins as a pilot project at Riverview Elementary – serving one second grade class.


Lunch Buddies expands to include not only a class at Riverview, but also a second grade class at Murphy Elementary.


Lunch Buddies in Grand Rapids is now at Murphy Elementary only, since Riverview closed.  Both second grade classrooms at Murphy participate.  Lunch Buddies is initiated at Bigfork Elementary.


The addition of a School based Mentoring Program begins in the fall.

The Greenway Student Mentoring is eliminated due to poor participation numbers.


A third classroom was added at Murphy Elementary for Lunch Buddies, bringing the total to three at Murphy and 1 at Bigfork.


A new version of Student Mentoring began at CJMS in ISD 316 – involving 5th and 6th grade students paired with College and H.S. students and focusing on transitioning into middle school.


Student Mentoring is renamed – Kinship Connections


Site-based mentoring (in collaboration with the YMCA) starts up in the fall of 2013.


Site-based mentoring begins with Deer River Boys and Girls Club

Website: Bridges Kinship Mentoring

Grace House

The mission of Grace House is “to provide safe, temporary shelter to individuals and families experiencing homelessness and connect them to community resources”.

We fulfill our mission by providing our guests with the basic human needs of shelter, meals and our ten bed facility is home for our guests to feel welcome and has adequate staff to assist our guests in planning for their future after being homeless.

Website: Grace House

Boys and Girls Club

The Grand Rapids Branch of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Northland is located at the Robert J Elkington Middle School. Accessible to all youth in the area and conveniently located at the bus transfer area for the school district, the Club has 6,000 square feet of space to offer a broad range of programs that promote academic excellence, good character and citizenship, and living a healthy lifestyle.

The Clubs promote a fun, safe, and secure space for kids to explore interests in many areas, including DIY STEM projects, music, sports, arts, and leadership. With access to outdoor spaces, gyms, and a swimming pool, the Club promotes healthy activity, along with healthy relationships.


Website: Boys and Girls Club