Funding for Youth Development

Positive Experiences + Positive Relationships + Positive Environments = Positive Youth Development

Based on the literature, the Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs, a collaboration of 19 federal departments and agencies that support youth, has created the following definition of positive youth development (PYD):

PYD is an intentional, prosocial approach that engages youth within their communities, schools, organizations, peer groups, and families in a manner that is productive and constructive; recognizes, utilizes, and enhances young people's strengths; and promotes positive outcomes for young people by providing opportunities, fostering positive relationships, and furnishing the support needed to build on their leadership strengths.

The Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs developed a research agenda focused on positive youth development. Through a collaborative consensus-building process, representatives from federal agencies identified three research domains (conceptual issues, data sources and indicators, and program implementation and effectiveness) and key research questions that could benefit from future research.

PYD has its origins in the field of prevention. In the past, prevention efforts typically focused on single problems before they surfaced in youth, such as teen pregnancy, substance abuse, and juvenile delinquency.

Over time, practitioners, policymakers, funders, and researchers determined that promoting positive asset building and considering young people as resources were critical strategies. As a result, the youth development field began examining the role of resiliency - the protective factors in a young person's environment - and how these factors could influence one's ability to overcome adversity. Those factors included, but were not limited to, family support and monitoring; caring adults; positive peer groups; strong sense of self, self-esteem, and future aspirations; and engagement in school and community activities.

Researchers and practitioners began to report that young people who possess a diverse set of protective factors can, in fact, experience more positive outcomes. These findings encouraged the development of interventions and programs that reduce risks and strengthen protective factors. The programs and interventions are strengthened when they involve and engage youth as equal partners, ultimately providing benefits for both for the program and the involved youth.


Foundation and philanthropic support for youth development from around the Web.

PSEG Foundation Now Accepting Grant Applications to Further STEM Education
Foundation: PSEG Foundation

The PSEG Foundation, a nonprofit that invests in programs that support education, is now accepting applications from afterschool, summer and youth development programs. The grants to be awarded...more

Yuma Community Foundation to Accept Grant Requests for Its 2013 Grant Cycle
Foundation: Yuma Community Foundation

The Yuma Community Foundation, an organization that acquires, oversees and allocates donor gifts for charitable purposes in Yuma County, will soon begin accepting grant applications from local...more

Troy Savings Bank Charitable Foundation Awards More Than $66,000 Grants
Foundation: Troy Savings Bank Charitable Foundation

Troy Savings Bank Charitable Foundation, the independent private foundation of Troy Savings Bank, awards $66,834 to community and youth development organization across New York\'s Capital...more

Hills Bank and Trust Company Awards 2013 Scholarship Grants

The Iowa 4-H Foundation, a financial resources provider for youth development, has recently released 18 scholarships which were awarded by Hills Bank and Trust Co. The community bank awarded...more

ABHF Accepts Proposals for African-American Communities
Foundation: Arkansas Community Foundation

The Arkansas Black Hall of Fame (ABHF) Foundation welcomes grant proposals for its annual grant program. In collaboration with the Arkansas Community Foundation, ABHF will award grants to approved...more

Osceola County Gain Support from An Improvement Project Grant
Foundation: Community Foundation of Osceola County

Five areas of Osceola County will receive its share of $82,781.67 from the Community Foundation of Osceola County. The areas are home to 27 nonprofit organizations that cater to human services,...more

$15,000 from Michael Saunders Foundation

The Michael Saunders Foundation awarded $15,000 to 14 area organizations. Grant recipients are: Women's Sertoma Club of Venice, Community Coalition on Homelessness (Manatee County), Boys & Girls...more

2012 John J. Murphy Family Scholarship Winner
Foundation: Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation, Communities Foundation of Texas

Amy Ruth of Randolph Central High School, pursuing nursing at Virginia Commonwealth University is the 2012 awardee of the John J. Murphy Family Scholarship--a $10,000 scholarship, with $2,500 awarded...more

Grants Available from Placer Community Foundation
Foundation: Placer Community Foundation

Placer Community Foundation is now accepting grant applications for its Youth Development Program and priority will be given to projects that serve economically disadvantaged youth, and whose...more

TK Foundation Approves 8 Grants

The TK Foundation will be awarding 8 grants totaling almost $2 million for maritime programs and youth development. The recipients of the grants are the World Maritime University, Center for Naval...more

Find Top Fifty Foundation Givers

Source: Foundation Stats (Foundation Center) / CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

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Y Life Teaches Students about Philanthropy

The Junior League of Gaston County, in partnership with the Central Family YMCA, has put the Y Life Program back on running track. It’s been operating for eight years, but has lost funding. Now, Junior League stepped in to help it continue.

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Edited by: Michael Saunders

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