YAC

Youth Advisory Council

The Community Foundation’s YAC is made up of high school students from all around the area. YAC members meet throughout the year to discuss and assess youth issues prevalent in the community, review grant proposals that benefit youth in the community, and look for opportunities to engage and empower youth in Northwest Ottawa County.

The YAC was established in 1991 thanks to a challenge grant from the W. K. Kellogg Foundation. Since then, over 200 students have served on the YAC, and the Youth Fund has generated almost $2 million in assets. More importantly, since its inception, the program has had the privilege to grant out about $1.2 million to programs that address relevant, pressing issues that face area youth.

We are a group of high school students that are passionate about learning about our community and investing in programs that will impact and improve the lives of youth. 

YAC’s Mission:  
We aim to set an example for future generations by giving of time, talent, and treasure to actively impact the lives of youth in Northwest Ottawa County.  

YAC’s Vision:  
A community where all youth have the resources and opportunities available, allowing them to be successful.  

YAC’s Values:  
Empathy – to understand the needs of the youth in our community 
Integrity – in making equitable decisions for the youth of our community  
Collaboration – through innovation and teamwork 
Open-mindedness – through a passionate and diverse group of youth representation

YAC Membership

Applications for the 2018-19 school year are now closed.

If you have questions, please contact Lauren Grevel at lgrevel@ghacf.org.

Membership Duties & Responsibilities

Members of the GHACF YAC have the opportunity to make real change in our community by awarding grants to projects they feel are worthy of funding. This is a leadership position in Northwest Ottawa County, and that means each member is held accountable for certain duties and responsibilities. They include:

  • Attend a minimum of 8 monthly meetings per school year (on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM) and teambuilding events held at various times throughout the summer. If unable to attend, contact the advisor 24 hours prior to the meeting.
  • Committed, dedicated interest in learning about community youth issues through a variety of channels: collaboration, discussion, guest speakers, site visits, and possible regional meetings with other YACs in the State of Michigan.
  • Preparation for meetings, which can include reading multiple pages of grants.
  • Evaluation of all funding requests in a fair and equitable manner that reflects the Foundation’s mission and state grant criteria.

Important Dates

Early May, 2019
Applications Due

First Half of June, 2019
Applications Reviewed/Interviews Conducted

July 2019
Orientation/Team Building Retreat

Important Dates

November 21, 2018  –  Letter of Inquiry Due
January 2, 2019  –  Grant Deadline
March 1, 2019  –  Notification

February 20, 2019  –  Letter of Inquiry Due
April 3, 2019  –  Grant Deadline
May 23, 2019  –  Notification

August 21, 2019  –  Letter of Inquiry Due
October 2, 2019  –  Grant Deadline
November 16, 2019  –  Notification

Youth Grant Program

The Grand Haven Area Community Foundation Youth Advisory Council awards grants annually to support local programs and projects that work to expand programming and opportunities for the young people in our community.

The same grant process and guidelines apply, however, please ensure your inquiry addresses one or more of the YAC Grantmaking Guidelines. Larger youth-focused grants may be reviewed by both the Grants Committee and the Youth Advisory Council for a co-funding opportunity.

Youth Grant Program

The Grand Haven Area Community Foundation Youth Advisory Council awards grants annually to support local programs and projects that work to expand programming and opportunities for the young people in our community.

The same grant process and guidelines apply, however, please ensure your inquiry addresses one or more of the YAC Grantmaking Guidelines. Larger youth-focused grants may be reviewed by both the Grants Committee and the Youth Advisory Council for a co-funding opportunity.

Important Dates

January 11, 2017  –  Grant Deadline
February 8, 2017  –  YAC Grant Review Meeting

April 12, 2017  –  Grant Deadline
May 10, 2017  –  YAC Grant Review Meeting

September 27, 2017  –  Grant Deadline
TBD  –  YAC Grant Review Meeting

For questions about the Youth Advisory Council, contact our Education & Youth Initiatives Officer, Lauren Grevel.

For questions about the Youth Advisory Council, contact our Grants & Program Officer, Lauren Grevel.

What does it mean to be a member of YAC?

Serving on the Youth Advisory Council is a great privilege for students, but your hard work also has a positive effect on our community, allowing you to make decisions to create opportunities for your peers today and tomorrow.

By serving on the YAC, members gain:

  • Important decision-making skills
  • Understanding of how to work in a group to award grants that benefit youth in our community.
  • Leadership experience, and the opportunity to participate in a state-wide youth leadership conference that focuses on philanthropy and service.
  • Knowledge and greater understanding of the needs of youth just like you in the community.
  • Perspective on the tougher issues facing many youth in Northwest Ottawa County.

My favorite part of YAC is the mindset of the group. It is a place that encourages deep and prospective thinking beyond anything I’ve ever experienced. YAC allows those with a passion for looking for meaningfulness and a deeper experience to flourish and grow in their understanding.

Matt Marcus

YAC Member

The ability to get to know and work with all of the other incredible leaders on the council is a wonderful opportunity, and I can’t wait to see what we can achieve together to further improve the community!

Jalen Green

YAC Member

By providing a platform that where youth can make a difference, YAC allows us to give back to our the community in ways that weren’t possible before.

Ben Garretson

YAC Member