African Immigrant Youth Career Development Grant Program

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Grant Program Overview

Youthprise envisions a Minnesota where outcomes for youth are no longer predictable by race, geography, or socioeconomic status. In commitment to our vision, we have partnered with Ka Joog, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED)*, and young people to design and host the newly expanded African Immigrant Youth Career Development Grant Program. Funds for this project are appropriated from the 2023 Minnesota Legislature.
Minnesota is home to a large and growing African population with many concentrated communities spread throughout the state. These communities have greatly contributed to the cultural and economic fabric of Minnesota, and yet, many face barriers that make it difficult to achieve economic prosperity. The African Immigrant Youth Development Grant Program will partner with and invest in nonprofit and community-based organizations, through reimbursement-based grants, that have demonstrated experience offering culturally relevant programming to African youth.

Grant Priorities

Through focus groups with African Youth and Youthprise staff, we have identified the following grant program priorities. We are seeking proposals that address the diverse needs of African youth, knowing that African youth are not a monolith. African youth are multidimensional and are looking for programming that meets their emotional, mental, and physical needs. They want programming that is culturally relevant and youth-led. As you are shaping your grant proposals, please consider the following priorities:

Young people are most interested in career development and work readiness programming that fosters, prioritizes, and acts on youth voice. Specifically, in our work with youth that identify from African Immigrant communities, they named wanting opportunities to inform and lead.


Young people are looking for a place to be themselves, relate with others, and build peer-to-peer connections and networks within their cultural communities and across different communities. They are interested in celebrating together, learning together, and growing together.


Young people are looking for trustworthy and invested adults that share cultural contexts and connections, to help guide their personal and professional growth. They are interested in internships, apprenticeships, and fellowships that allow them to gain experience in a supportive environment.


Young people are seeking support in navigating complex white dominant cultural systems and norms that come into tension with their cultural norms and beliefs. These include but are not limited to job searching, post-secondary education, industry credentialing, finances, transportation, housing, and community services.


Young people want to have the space to dream, explore possibilities, and experiment with different career paths and professions in the context of their personal, family, and community hopes and visions. They want to grow in their leadership and clarify their personal values, strengths, and unique skill sets.


Young people are interested in setting goals, both big and small, and creating plans to work toward them. They are also interested in strengthening their networking and public speaking skills, as well as job application and interviewing skills.

As you craft your proposals and budgets, we encourage you to include youth wages, fringe benefits, and wrap-around services in your proposal budgets. Wrap-around services might include:





Social Emotional Learning

Eligibility Requirements

• Eligible applicants include 501(c)(3)* youth, community-based, and economic development organizations, as well as local units of government and public school districts.
• Organizations must be located in Minnesota and serving populations within Minnesota.
• Organizations must have a demonstrated history of serving African* youth (up to age 24) or communities.
*Eligible applicants also include organizations described above that have a 501(c)(3) fiscal sponsor in lieu of a 501(c)(3).
*For the purposes of these funds, we are defining “African Immigrant” as populations who have recently moved from the continent of Africa.

Reporting Requirements

In compliance with the grant terms, grantees are required to report in the following ways:
• Quarterly Data & Narrative Progress Reports
• Monthly Reimbursement Payment Requests (RPRs). (This is a reimbursement-based grant.)
• A Desk Review facilitated by Youthprise
• A Site Visit facilitated by Youthprise
• A Developmental Relationships Survey. (This is a 20-minute survey taken by the young people enrolled in your program and administered via computer or cell phone once during the grant period.)

Award Amounts

• Organizations with operating budgets greater than $750,000 can request up to $75,000 for their project or program (Large Organizations).
• Organizations with operating budgets of $750,000 or less can request up to $35,000 for their project or program (Small Organizations).
• We anticipate making about 30 grant awards, with 5 projected for large organizations and 25 projected for small organizations. This number is subject to change based on the requests received.


Here is our anticipated timeline for this grant program.
RFP Opens   12/19/2023
Info Session   12/21/2023
RFP Closes   1/30/2024
Community Grant Review Process   February
Committee & Board Approval Process   March
Applicant Notification   March - April
*We will make every effort to adhere to the timeline as presented and will leave space for flexibility as needed.


As we receive questions, we are adding them to our FAQs. You can view our full list of FAQs here.

To Apply

To apply, complete an application via our grant portal. Applications must be submitted by 11:59 PM on 1/30/2024*

*Please note that we do not have 24-7 support available, and Youthprise will be closed from December 22, 2023 - January 7, 2024. To avoid any complications, please ensure you allow enough time to create an account (if a new user) and submit your application before the deadline.


Contact Program & Grants Manager Abby Wellan at

*The State of Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) funded (in whole or in part) this workforce development product (training, event, curricula, etc.) through a grant. The grant recipient created this product. DEED does not endorse this product or make guarantees, warranties, or assurances of any kind, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, completeness, timeliness, usefulness, adequacy, continued availability, or ownership of the information herein or elsewhere.