Have a Question for Our Experts?


Showing posts tagged with youth empowerment

  • Youth Want to Learn About Social Activism in Schools

    By Jonathan Christie

    A recent survey our Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI) program conducted with the Scottish Youth Parliament found that more than 80% of young people believed activity focused on philanthropy and social activism should be part of the core secondary curriculum.

    Read More

    January 24, 2019

    , , ,

  • Youth Philanthropy, Trust Building, and Sharing Power

    By Sheryl Seller

    Despite the growing number of youth philanthropy programs in the United States, a 2002 survey found that “only 48 percent of adults believe it is important to seek young people’s opinions when making decisions that affect them.” As Katie Richards-Schuster, a professor at University of Michigan stated in 2012, “In general, American society, through its policies and practices, tends to focus on the construction of youth as vulnerable and at risk at best, and as problems at worst.” However, we know that through youth philanthropy programs where young people are given decision-making power as well as provided with mentorship, communities thrive.

    Read More

    August 16, 2018

    , , , ,

  • The Future of Philanthropy

    By Maria Miranda

    On a clear spring Saturday in downtown Cleveland an intergenerational group gathered for Foundation Center Midwest’s Youth Philanthropy Summit. The Summit wrapped up its year-long 40th anniversary celebration with a nod to the future – engaging the next generation of philanthropists, volunteers, and social sector leaders.

    Read More

    April 20, 2018

    , , , ,

  • How Do I Start a Youth Grantmaking Program to Ensure Youth Voice? What Are the Benefits of Doing so as a Funder?

    By Kelly Davenport Nowlin

    In 2000, my family’s foundation (Surdna) established the Andrus Family Philanthropy Program to engage future generations in our family in formalized philanthropy. In addition, we created two youth programs, targeting 13-17 and 18-24 year olds, respectively (learn more here!). For years, these youth programs were designed and run by adults with expertise in the field, helping young people define what they cared about and find their identity in philanthropy. I have come across similar youth initiatives where adults get together to develop all aspects of the program, then present it to the young people to experience and implement. If the past sixteen years has taught me anything about youth philanthropy it is this: don’t take “youth” out of the development and creation of a youth philanthropy program.

    Read More

    July 27, 2016

    , , , , ,

  • What Do I Need to Know About Presenting to a Board? What Skills Can I Learn?

    By Katherine Scott

    As a young person, I advocated for every cause I cared about. I’d post articles on the wall of our school cafeteria about almost every issue (I was passionate about them all) and fundraise (and eventually recruit an entire team) for our local AIDS walk. I even was a very early volunteer in creating a nonprofit named MotherHouse. Through my work with that nonprofit, I became engaged in youth philanthropy. I applied for a project grant from my local community foundation’s youth philanthropy committee on behalf of my school volunteer club (leveraging lots of volunteers and great donations too!). With lots of great donations and helpful volunteers, we were able to use the grant to redo an entire room at MotherHouse. Then, I actually joined my local community foundation, Community Foundation of Northern Illinois’s (CFNIL) In Youth We Trust Youth Advisory Council, because I had seen the deep impact that was possible through youth philanthropy.

    Read More

    June 15, 2016

    , , , , ,

  • What Should I Know About Doing a Community Needs Assessment?

    By Danielle LaJoie

    As a former member of the Battle Creek Community Foundation’s Youth Alliance Committee (YAC) and also the Michigan Community Foundations Youth Project, I’ve seen community needs assessments from both the view of a participant in the assessment and also as the creator of the assessment. A community needs assessment is a tool through which your program can gather information from those in your community, especially young people, about what needs they have and what is most important to them. The needs assessment is unique to each program and community, but ultimately it can be used to ensure the effectiveness of your giving.

    Read More

    April 22, 2016

    , , , ,

  • What Do Adults Need to Do to Really Let Youth Lead?

    By Maddie Adkins

    As the president of my high school environmental club and the youth leader of The Promise Project, I’ve learned a few things about how to empower youth to become leaders. (1) Facilitate, don’t delegate. How do you keep youth motivated? The answer is simple - true leadership is all about “facilitating”, not “delegating”. You may think that assigning tasks is the same thing as giving youth a leadership role, but until you actually give youth a real piece of the project, something that they can take ownership of and be creative with, they will always be less motivated to work on the project. Instead of asking them to design you a logo, let them be a part of creating the project behind that logo. You have to give them a reason to care about the project, and the best way to do that is to give them the space to make it their own project.

    Read More

    March 21, 2016