Youth Philanthropy Project


Youth Philanthropy Project is designed to help high school students develop personal and professional skills needed by the next generation of community leaders. With staff support, students form a leadership committee to review grant proposals and make funding decisions. They learn about local issues affecting Whatcom County and distribute funding that benefits environmentally focused organizations. 

Youth Philanthropy Project:

  • Develops soft skills such as; leadership, public speaking, critical thinking and decision making
  • Expands nonprofit development skills including; fundraising techniques, budget analysis, grant making review process
  • Fosters interest in supporting nonprofits in the future- generates a philanthropic nature
  • Builds student confidence – knowing they have the ability to make an impact
  • Encourages teamwork while building consensus with a diverse community of student leaders
  • Engages 10-15 high school students from Whatcom County.   

This program typically runs from February – April. Committee members meet weekly with a facilitator/coach who support their work. Members meet an average of six times.

Applications for the Committee are accepted in the Spring and Fall until all spots are filled.  Please check back with us in November for updated information and a link to the application.

Funding for youth grant making comes from an endowment started by two high school seniors who biked more than 1,200 miles around Washington State to raise funds intended to introduce youth in our community to the concept of charitable giving.

Together they raised $14,324.31 and gifted it to the Whatcom Community Foundation to start an endowment for youth philanthropy focused on the environment.

As of May 2018, youth philanthropy committee members helped grow the permanent endowment to over $50,000 and awarded grants totaling $40,000 to support seventeen local projects. 

YPP grant applications are accepted in January and funding decisions will be made by the youth philanthropy committee in March.

2020 Youth Philanthropy Awards

2019 Youth Philanthropy Project Awards

2018 Youth Philanthropy Project Awards

2017 Youth Philanthropy Awards

The Youth Philanthropy Project continues to grow thanks to donors like you.  

Please consider contributing to the Youth Philanthropy Project by clicking Here (non-enowed). Click Here to give to the Youth Philanthropy Project Endowment

To learn more about YPP contact Pamela at 360.671.6463 or email @