2020 Youth Council Grants Awarded to Third Space Programs Across VT

Four projects have been selected by Vermont Afterschool to receive a Youth Council Grant that will support the formation of local youth councils across Vermont.

Funded by the Northfield Savings Bank Foundation, the grants will go to the City of Winooski Community Services Department, Burlington High School Expanded Learning Program, Outright Vermont, and CVSU Afterschool for starting/expanding youth councils, workshops and training for staff, stipends for youth council members, and a budget for youth-led initiatives.

“We are so grateful to the NSB Foundation for supporting this project,” stated Vermont Afterschool Executive Director Holly Morehouse. “This is a direct way to recognize and support our youth in helping them to feel empowered, try new things, and feel connected within their local communities.”

A project of Vermont Afterschool, the statewide Youth Council Grants are designed to inspire youth leadership, connection, and engagement in the third space when youth aren’t at home or school. The youth councils will be charged with soliciting and funding youth-led ideas for how to make their communities better for young people. The initiative aims to help our communities see youth as a resource; increase opportunities for innovation and inclusion; support economic vitality; and build a stronger democracy. 

All projects funded will be operating in the third space and serve middle and high school youth. Each grant includes up to 5,000 towards a participatory budget process that will fund local youth-led projects through the youth council. Per grant requirements, the councils must be based in Chittenden, Washington, and Orange Counties where the Northfield Savings Bank has branch locations. 

“Young people make for a better Vermont,” explained Morehouse. “Especially with the current challenges under COVID-19 around isolation and disconnection, we are excited to give young people opportunities to be part of Vermont’s path forward, to build agency, and to find creative ways to make their communities stronger.”