RFP: YPAR Grant and Cohort

The 2019 YPAR Grant and Cohort RFP deadline has passed and we are no longer accepting applications.

Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR) grant and cohort application are now open until November 4, 2019. YPAR is an innovative approach to positive youth and community development rooted in social justice principles in which young people receive training and support to conduct and lead systemic research to improve their lives, their communities, and the institutions intended to serve them. YPAR comes out of Participatory Action Research (PAR), an approach to building knowledge that involves the people most affected by a particular issue. YPAR includes those most affected by the issue conducting research and analysis to develop solutions that are better able to bring about social, cultural, and political transformation.

We believe this approach is integral to healing communities and building social movements that address the root causes of disparities and injustice. Youthprise intends to build on the success of previous YPAR cohorts by expanding the number of YPAR teams, increasing the number of youth researchers, increasing youth leadership and engagement, and adding to the body of knowledge regarding issues that affect youth and their communities.

YPAR teams will be developed, sponsored, housed, and facilitated over a 12-month project period by applicant organizations. Organizations best suited to sponsor YPAR teams are those that model positive youth development and value youth voice, youth leadership, and youth action. YPAR teams will receive training and technical assistance; however, applicant organizations must be able to dedicate a facilitator with some familiarity with research, evaluation, or organizing.

YPAR teams produce research focused on social action that is informed by local community input; therefore, applicant organizations must be familiar with and comfortable with engaging communities connected with their YPAR youth. Supporting this youth-led community engagement approach toward research is critical to developing leadership and technical skills as well as building the capacity of young people to be change-makers. More information about how YPAR teams conduct and approach their project, including youth, adult, and organizational roles and responsibilities will be covered during the grant information webinars.

Grant Program Information 

  • $100,000 is available in funding for projects.
  • Five $20,000 grants will be awarded.
  • Grants are one year beginning on January 1, 2020, and ending on December 31, 2020.
  • YPAR orientation, subsequent training, and technical assistance will be provided to prepare research teams for their projects.

Eligibility & Requirements

  • Eligible applicants include educational institutions, 501(c)(3) youth-focused organizations, and 501(c)(3) community, social justice, and research organizations that have a focus on issues that affect youth. Organizations described above with fiscal sponsors are also eligible to apply.
  • Organizations must be located in Minnesota
  • Organizations need to assemble a team of young people ages 15 to 24 years of age to develop and lead research.
  • The work is aligned with Youthprise’s three Impact Areas:
    • Leadership and Learning- Promotes the learning, leadership and social-emotional development of youth and seeking to shift how programs engage youth in leadership and governance.
    • Economic Opportunity- Create opportunities for economic prosperity by supporting programs and initiatives that build workforce skills, promote youth entrepreneurship, and expose youth to career pathways.
    • Health and Safety- Promote the holistic health and safety of young people by meeting basic needs and ensuring young people are safe and not criminalized in their communities.
  • Within the Impact Areas, projects should focus on one or more of the following topics:
    • Out of School Time
    • Youth Centered Learning
    • Addressing/Healing Trauma
    • Increasing Accessibility
    • Disability Justice
    • Creating Alternatives to Youth Incarceration
    • Improving Water and Food Access
    • Stabilizing Housing and eliminating Homelessness
    • Addressing Mental Health needs
  • Organizations need to provide appropriate compensation for youth researchers.
  • Organizations also need to assign a facilitator with some research, evaluation and organizing qualifications or experience to provide support to youth.
  • Participate in YPAR orientation and training.
  • Participate and share information and data in quarterly meetings of the YPAR network.
  • Present research, data, and findings to the community and to the YPAR network.
  • Submit your data and findings to Youthprise.
  • Complete a final report that consists of an interview with Youthprise staff to summarize your process, your findings, your outcomes, and your research journey.

Selection Criteria
A two-stage review process will be used to award YPAR grants. The first stage will consist of an evaluation of grant applications by community reviewers primarily comprised of young people. The second stage will consist of in-person interviews with Youthprise staff and young people.  Recommendations from the review process will be made to the Youthprise Board of Directors for final award decisions on 12-17-19. The selection process will include the following:

  • Evaluation of your capacity to assemble a team of youth researchers willing to commit to a yearlong research project.
  • Evaluation of your organization’s or facilitator’s qualifications or experience engaging youth and/or experience conducting research, evaluation, or organizing issues-based campaigns.
  • Evaluation of the scope of your research project, the potential for application of your findings, and degree of engagement with the community.
  • Evaluation of your project and participant goals and outcomes.
  • Evaluation of how youth researchers are being compensated for their work

RFP Timeline

RFP Opens 9-16-19
Grant Information Webinars 10-2-19 & 10-22-19*
RFP Closes 11-4-19 at 11:59 pm 
Grant Review Completed Week of 11-18-19 
Applicant Notification 12-20-19
YPAR Projects Begin 1/1/20
YPAR Orientation TBD 

*For more information, watch the webinar below

or contact Nadia Linoo at nadia@youthprise.org.

Click here to apply