Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation

Youth Council Grant Program

Focus Area: Youth 
Application Available: February 8, 2017
Application Deadline: March 28, 2017
Available Funds: TBD

Youth Council awards nearly $80,000 in grants annually. Grants support local programs and projects that have expanded opportunities for young people throughout our region.

Starting in 2017, the Youth Council will be transitioning to a single grant cycle per year. This grant cycle will typically launch in February with grant decisions being distributed in June. The average grant size can be expected to be around $10,000.

At the broadest level, Youth Council will review grant applications for programs that serve area youth between the ages of 5-18. Youth Council is particularly interested in programs that are youth-initiated or involve youth in decision-making.

Every three years, the Youth Council surveys local teens from across Washtenaw County to assess what issues and needs are most important to youth. The intent is to capture youth perspective to ensure quality and engaging programming is funded that will have effective and lasting impact. The most recent Needs Assessment Survey was completed in December of 2016 with the following funding priorities emerging as the most urgent:

Listed in no particular order:
1. Mental health initiatives for teens
2. Programs that equip teens for employment before and/or after graduation
3. Programs that prepares students for college and the college admissions process
4. Programs that address discrimination in key areas such as:
                 ●  Mental health
                 ●  Physical and cognitive disabilities
                 ●  Gender identity
                 ●  Sexual orientation
                 ●  Socioeconomic status
                 ●  Ethnicity
                 ●  Religion

Key elements of the funding priorities include:                      
                 ●  Transportation                      
                 ●  Stipend participation for leadership positions
                 ●  Sliding scale/reduced cost participation fees
                 ●  Programs and organizations that validate youth voice and perspective

The Youth Council also oversees two separate funds that also focus on youth:

James and Clarice Foster Fund: Supports programs focused on helping youth in the Juvenile Division of the Probate Court system and grants out approximately $3,500 per year.

Children with Disabilities Fund: Supports programs that meet the needs of children with disabilities in Washtenaw County and grants out approximately $5,000 per year.

The grant size for both of the funds named above is typically the full amount available.

Register Your Nonprofit:
Register your nonprofit to receive your login credentials that grant you access to the NonProfit Portal. Through this portal you can apply for grants and receive information specific to nonprofits. 

If you are unsure if your organization has already registered and/or you need to add or delete users, please contact Katie Van Dusen or Maryellen Ferro.

Application Submission Process:

  1. Review grant program guidelines at
  2. Youth Council Applicants:  Contact AAACF Staff to review your grant proposal  prior to submitting the application form (this is a required step for Youth Council or Bach Fund grant programs).  This conversation will ensure that the proposal aligns with the program's funding priorities.   Beginning on February 8th, please contact Chris Lemon to schedule a phone call. Phone calls must occur by March 22nd.
  3. Access sample application forms on the NonProfit Portal.  
  4. Submit all required narrative sections on the NonProfit Portal.
  5. Funding decisions will be made in the spring of 2017.

Questions? Please email Chris Lemon, Youth Council Advisor.