RFP: East African Youth Economic Development Grant

Youthprise is pleased to announce the availability of funding for youth economic development activities through a request for proposal process for the East African Youth Economic Development Grant.

Minnesota is home to a large and growing East African population with many concentrated communities spread throughout the state in cities such as Rochester, St. Cloud, Moorhead, Willmar, Minneapolis, and St. Paul. Their communities have greatly contributed to the cultural and economic landscape in Minnesota. However, East African communities in Minnesota face cultural, religious, language, and racial barriers that make it difficult for them to achieve economic self-sufficiency. As part of our commitment to invest and build capacity in East African organizations and youth, Youthprise has partnered with the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development to reduce disparities and address challenges facing East African youth.

The purpose of funding is to support East African youth and community-focused organizations to provide economic development activities and services designed to develop long-term economic self-sufficiency for East African youth in communities with concentrated East African populations.

Youthprise is interested in projects delivered by organizations steeped in East African culture that address the needs of East African youth regarding workforce development, family-sustaining wages, career pathways, education development, entrepreneurship, and support services. Projects should focus on activities designed to give youth tools and skills that can lead to economic self-sufficiency such as:

  • Career exploration and career planning
  • Work readiness training
  • Job training
  • Job placement
  • Mentoring
  • Internships and apprenticeships
  • Education and industry-recognized credentialing
  • Business development and entrepreneurship exploration

Projects are encouraged to dedicate funding for youth wages and fringe benefits in support of job placement efforts. In addition, projects are encouraged to provide support services to promote success by addressing barriers in areas such as:

  • Transportation
  • Housing
  • Remedial education
  • Language
  • Social-Emotional Learning

Competitive Priorities

Youthprise is interested in funding projects that will build capacity in East African organizations and youth. As such, Youthprise is prioritizing proposals whose purposes involve the development of long-term economic self-sufficiency for East African youth in communities with concentrated East African populations with 50 percent of the funds going to Greater Minnesota.

Partnerships &Collaborations

Where appropriate, a proposal can include partnerships to provide services. These partnerships must be explicitly described including the services to be provided by each partner, including costs, specific staff members providing services, etc.

Tasks & Deliverables

All recipients of funding will be required to track and report outcomes. Youthprise will work with the awarded organizations to identify the final outcome measures that will be tracked and reported on this grant. Awarded applicants will be required to submit quarterly progress reports and monthly financial reimbursement reports.

Eligibility & Requirements

Eligible applicants include 501(c)(3) youth and community-focused organizations as well as economic development organizations. In addition, organizations must not have a budget greater than $2,000,000, must be located in Minnesota, and must have a history of serving East African youth or communities. Eligible applicants also include organizations described above that have a 501(c)(3) fiscal sponsor in lieu of a 501(c)(3). Awarded applicants will be required to submit quarterly progress reports and monthly or quarterly financial reimbursement reports.

Ineligible Expenses

 Ineligible expenses include but are not limited to:

  • Fundraising;
  • Taxes, except sales tax on goods and services;
  • Lobbyists, political contributions;
  • Bad debts, late payment fees, finance charges, or contingency fees;
  • Parking or traffic violations; and
  • Out of state transportation and travel expenses.   (Minnesota will be considered the home state for determining whether travel is out of state).

No more than 10 percent of grant funds expended may be used for administrative expenses.  Youthprise reserves the right to offset overpayments and disallowances by requiring repayment of costs.

Selection Process

Youthprise is committed to youth and community voice in our grantmaking decision-making process. In the first stage of the selection process, community reviewers comprised of youth, East African community members, and other stakeholders will review grant proposals and make recommendations for funding. In the second stage of the selection process, Youthprise and DEED staff will conduct capacity assessments of recommended organizations prior to forwarding the final community reviewed recommendations to the Youthprise Board of Directors for award decisions.

Grant Program Information & RFP Timeline

  • $855,000 is available for a two-year period beginning January 1, 2020.
  • Seventeen to twenty small grants up to $40,000 each will be awarded.
  • Two large grants up to $80,000 will be awarded.
  • Fifty percent of funds will be available for Twin Cities based projects.
  • Fifty percent of funds will be available for Greater Minnesota based projects.

RFP Timeline

RFP Opens 10-14-19
RFP Closes 11-22-19
Grant Review Week of 12-2-19
Applicant Notification Week of 12-17-19

Technical assistance is available for interpreting instructions. Questions will only be accepted via email.

How to Apply

Grant applications are accepted online through our grants management system. UPDATED: Grants must be submitted by 11:59 PM CDT on 11-22-19. We encourage you to submit your application early to give you ample time to ask questions or address any technical difficulties you may experience.  To apply now please click on the apply button below.

Click here to apply

For questions, please contact Maurice Nins at maurice@youthprise.org or 612-692-5523