Youth as Resources is a leadership development initiative that offers grant funding to youth-led community service projects.
The funding process, which will start in the 2022-23 school year after a hiatus during the COVID-19 pandemic, is overseen by the YAR board, which is comprised of middle school students.
Youth as Resources supports and promotes young adults as capable community contributors who have valuable ideas and are able to take on responsibilities with energy and skill. It empowers young adults to develop and use their capacity to transform themselves and the world they live in through active participation in the relationships, events and institutions that impact their lives. Youth as resources also fosters partnerships between youth and adults as respectful partners who share power and decision making. It promotes the direct involvement of youth in their communities as productive workers, as agents of change and as advocates for themselves and others and encourages young adults to pursue the acquisition of new knowledge and development of new skills by providing support and challenging opportunities.
The Youth As Resources model was conceived in the mid-1980s by the National Crime Prevention Council with the idea that young people who feel invested in and valued by their community are less likely to commit crimes against their community. Youth As Resources recognizes youth as valuable resources and engages them as partners with adults in bringing about positive community change.
Youth As Resources began in Racine County in 1996. Original funders include United Way of Racine County, the S.C. Johnson Fund, Racine County, the Racine Community Foundation and private individuals. Since 1996, Youth As Resources has funded 420 community service projects totaling $286,000.
In 2007, Youth As Resources began operating as an investment committee of United Way of Racine County. The Youth As Resources board would make funding recommendations for approval by United Way of Racine County’s Community Investment Committee.
In 2022, Youth as Resources began again after a hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A Youth as Resources board comprised of Mitchell Community School middle school students have begun cultivating their leadership and collaboration skills through regular meetings and a community service project constructing sensory water bottles for Mitchell Community School classrooms. The Youth as Resources board will begin the funding process during the 2022-23 school year.
Apply for funding
Funding information and the grant application for the 2022-23 school year will be available soon! Please check back later for more information.