Research shows that youth who are engaged in philanthropy lead their peers in volunteering and giving throughout their lives. Maine’s young people will soon be running nonprofits, contributing to community causes and serving as board members of organizations that serve Maine people. Through JOY, students learn the critical role that nonprofits play in meeting often overwhelming community needs. They learn that philanthropy is a tool to support nonprofit activity and to measure nonprofit success.
Students Making Grants Make a Difference
Jumpstart Our Youth teaches state-of-the-art philanthropic approaches, including an online grant application and management system, while encouraging students to bring their own ideas to the funding process. Like foundation program officers, students design and distribute requests for proposals (RFPs), review applications from local nonprofits, participate in site visits, interview nonprofit applicants, review budgets — and then make tough decisions on where to award limited grant funds. Often, JMG chapters raise additional funds to add to their JOY grants. They learn critical evaluation, collaboration, finance and operational skills as they determine how to award their grants.
Students develop community service learning projects: landscaping at summer camps, organizing food pantries, collecting clothing for thrift stores – to provide hands-on support to the community and to strengthen their understanding of how money and volunteer time are critical components to nonprofit success.
“The compassion and consideration of the JOY students are an inspiration. The program ensures that organizations like ours will continue to be available to help the most needy in Maine communities.”—Manna,Inc.