Social justice has been on many people’s minds for the past few years, and that doesn’t just count those over the age of 18. That’s why the City of Seattle has made a mini-grant ranging from $500 to $8,000 available to fund social justice projects led by youth between the ages of 12 and 25. The projects that can be awarded these grants include those that focus on “issues of racism, discrimination and bias.” All of that means that youth, school groups and youth-led community groups doing a social justice project in Seattle can get funded by the City of Seattle.
The youth-led social justice mini-grant became available when the Seattle City Council passed Ordinance 126237 in April of this year. The ordinance made a hundred thousand dollars available through the Department of Education and Early Learning (DEEL) for youth between the age of 12 and 24 in order to “develop and implement their own social justice initiatives related to Asian-American Pacific Islander (AAPI), Black, Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC), and LGBTQIA+ issues.” It’s also important to note that the mini-grant is not competitive, meaning that so long as the application is eligible, it will receive funding while the money lasts. If there are more requests than funds, the Department of Education and Early Learning will prioritize projects based on different factors, which include council districts served, whether a fiscal sponsor is identified, the social justice topic area, the target audience of the project and how many people the project aims to serve. The deadline for the application is Oct. 25 at 5 p.m.
It is important to note that while adults who are 25 years old and older are not eligible to apply for the grant, they can act as fiscal sponsors for the grant. Fiscal sponsors can be nonprofits, public entities like schools or even licensed businesses. Other requirements for the mini-grant include that the project must be youth-led, so an application cannot be made by a 24-year-old while the rest of the people leading the project are 25 years old or older. Applicants for the mini-grant don’t have to live in Seattle, and their applications will also be accepted so long as the project occurs in the city of Seattle. The mini-grant is not a first-come first-serve application, and applications will be accepted so long as they are submitted by the deadline and meet all requirements for eligibility. The budget worksheet is also not mandatory, and only meant to be a tool for the application. The projects funded by the mini-grant are intended to end no later than Aug. 31, 2022.