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Students Support Grants Cycle Virtually

2019 YAC On-Site Visit

Under normal circumstances, Youth Advisory Council (YAC) students would be busy studying for final exams and attending end-of-year events and celebrations. With distance learning and most events canceled or postponed, students are using their time to play an important role in this year’s competitive grants program.

This year, Truman Heartland Community Foundation is fast-tracking the competitive grants cycle to award grants in July instead of November, to help the nonprofit community during the coronavirus pandemic.

Over the next few weeks, teams of students will be busy reviewing grant applications from local youth-serving nonprofits. Using Zoom, students will make virtual site visits to learn more about the services the nonprofits provide and the programs that would be supported by grant funding from Truman Heartland.

YAC students provide valuable insight for Truman Heartland’s Grants Committee, but this is an equally important experience for these young philanthropists.

"Being a part of the grants review process has been an excellent look behind the scenes at area nonprofits," said Devin Allaman, graduating YAC team leader at Lee's Summit North High School. "I've really enjoyed learning about how the Foundation and other nonprofits function so that I can better serve the community, both now and in the future."

In addition to providing recommendations to the Grants Committee, the students will award grants from their self-funded endowment. In 2019, YAC awarded $3,000 in grants, for a total of $24,000 provided in 73 grants to nonprofits since 2008.

Truman Heartland’s Youth Advisory Council engages nearly 160 students annually from 13 high schools in Eastern Jackson County. YAC students gain hands-on experience in fundraising, grantmaking and volunteering. Learn more about Youth Advisory Council at

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