CHIP IN Batavia:

            Community Helpers Impacting People in Need


Our Mission

To support students of BPS District 101 who find themselves in temporary housing situations and to support them while they are transitioning to permanent housing and to insure that students who are facing poverty can be successful in school.  To support students in BPS District 101 who are in low income families and have a  difficult time with basic needs.


It  started in 2013, when a community member approached Lisa Palese about helping a family that she heard about who was homeless.  Upon further invesitagation, she found out there were more than 50 students in Batavia living in temporary housing.  A group of parents and community members quickly formed CHIP IN  Batavia to support these students to give them the best educational experience possible.  There are anywhere from 30-70 homeless students during the school years. In addition, there are over 1,000 students from low-income families that have a very difficult time making ends meet.   With the incredible support from our community, we have expanded to also help these low income families with their needs as well.  We work with staff in administration and with staff at all 8 schools to identify student (and their family) needs.  We can work very fast to get what is needed to help make their lives easier and more comfortable. 


          "We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give."

                                                                                ~Winston Churchill

Director of Student Services

Kari Ruh is the Director of Student Services and the Homeless Liaison for Batavia Schools.  As of August 2019, there were  over 40 students in the Batavia that are considered homeless. About 14% of the school population is on free/reduced lunch.  Kari works with these families, and families in the Special Ed and Early Childhood programs, to ensure that students maximize learning by providing a continuum of services.

Kari Ruh

Director of Student Services/Homeless Liaison



Community Outreach Coordinator


 Amy Nelson provides many support services, through Title One funds, as the Community Outreach Coordinator. She assists Kari Ruh, our Student Services Director, with the coordination of services and programs for our students currently facing homelessness and financial difficulties. She  serves our Title One schools, helping those schools with existent and new programs offered to help bring more success for our students in academic distress. She  works with CHIP IN , area churches, and community members to expand the support that Batavia can offer to students. We work very closely with Amy, as she vets the needs of families for CHIP IN. Amy has lived in Batavia for 45 years, is a Batavia graduate, a former Batavia teacher, is married to a Batavia teacher and coach, and has 3 children. Amy is grateful to be in such a wonderful community who supports and encourages our students, our District and our incredible city of Batavia. 

Amy Nelson
Community Outreach Coordinator


CHIP IN Coordinators: We work directly with each school to help with specific student/family needs.  We can work quickly to meet the needs that school administration and teachers recommend:

Melinda Kintz, co-chair, Batavia Apartments Liaison

Joanne Spitz, co-chair; BHS Liaison

Celeste Dalton, BHS Liaison

Diane Anderson, RMS Liaison (Batavia Woman's Club)

Bobbie VonLunen, RMS Liaison (Batavia Woman's Club)

Sue Bauer,  HWS Liaison (Batavia Kiwanis Club)

Cindy Morgan, LWS Liaison 

Amy Moore, AGS Liaison

Karen Yunker, HCS Liaison

Nancy Schmitz, JBN Liaison

Want to Chip In?

For more information or to volunteer, contact us at:

CHIP IN Batavia

c/o Batavia Foundation for Educational Excellence

P.O. Box 1003

Batavia, IL  60510

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