Students are often the target for funding decisions but rarely have a democratic say in how funding allocations or decisions are made. The SESEC Youth Participatory Grantmaking Project seeks to flip these power dynamics by creating a framework for students, and especially students of color in SE Seattle, to make funding decisions and support their leadership in this arena.
By creating a pool of resources and mentoring youth of color in making decisions around how to bring those resources to their own schools and communities, this project provides them a voice in shaping their own educational and life experiences. As they become more confident in understanding their role in shaping their environment, they will ultimately strengthen their self-advocacy skills and their ability to disrupt current practices that exclude them from school-based and community-based decision-making altogether. This is also a trust building exercise between young people and systems, where we learn together and alongside each other how to re-shape and create new ways of being in community together.
Participants meet regularly throughout the school year, where they receive supportive training and mentoring in the areas of local education policy, social justice-focused philanthropy, and advocacy skills development. At the end of each cohort, youth participants collaboratively allocate grant funding to organizations of their choice that support greater opportunity for youth in Seattle. For more information, check out this South Seattle Emerald article about our first Youth Grantmaking Cohort.
If you have any questions or concerns before applying, feel free to reach out to [email protected] to discuss whether the program is a fit for you.
This program is designed for:
Seattle youth of color aged 15-21 who are interested in developing their leadership capacity, learning about philanthropy as a powerful tool for social justice, and meeting new people. This is a paid opportunity.
Next scheduled program:
The 2024 Program is scheduled for the following Sundays at the offices of SESEC at El Centro De La Raza (2524 16th Ave South, Ste #306 Seattle, WA 98144). Our location is served by light rail and Metro bus routes 36, 60 and 107.
Time will be determined by the cohort’s preferences via the application below.
We want to hear from you! Please reach out with questions, comments, and ideas.