Washington, DC—The Corporation for National and Community Service announces the availability of $5.4 million in grants to establish Youth Engagement Zones, as called for by the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act. The purpose of the new initiative is to encourage collaborative community problem solving that increases students' academic and civic engagement while improving the odds that they will stay in school and graduate from high school.
“Young people cannot achieve success in life without opportunities – and that is what these funds will do,” said Patrick Corvington, CEO of the Corporation. “Engaging students in meaningful service will have a sustained impact on the lives of those serving and the communities they call home.”
The agency anticipates awarding between four and twelve three-year grants of $300,000 to $450,000 per year to create networks of individuals, organizations and institutions that support the positive development of young people. The grants will provide support for eligible partnerships to build on existing resources and develop coordinated school-based or community-based service-learning opportunities for secondary school students.
Grants will support the establishment or implementation of Youth Engagement Zones to improve student engagement, including student attendance and behavior, and student achievement, graduation rates and college-going rates by:
1. Engaging youth as positive contributors through service-learning to demonstrate the relevance of academic coursework and the value of civic engagement to their educational and personal development;
2. Connecting with citizens from diverse communities, backgrounds and perspectives to provide expanded opportunities to serve; and
3. Building enduring capacity within communities to become more effective at using service as a solution to address pressing challenges.
Applications are due by June 15 at 5 p.m. EDT. Potential applicants should send a letter of intent to apply to YEZ@cns.gov by May 28. For further information and instructions on how to apply, click here.