Community Foundation of Westmoreland County

Youth Voice in Philanthropy

Youth philanthropy interns from CFWC serve meals to customers at Knead Community Cafe in New Kensington, the region's only pay what you can restaurant.
Youth philanthropy interns from CFWC serve meals to customers at Knead Community Cafe in New Kensington, the region's only pay what you can restaurant.

The Community Foundation of Westmoreland County (CFWC) believes that engaging youth voice in philanthropy is essential to building a better Westmoreland community. Our youth engagement programs empower young leaders with the knowledge and skills they will need to address community issues now, and in the future.

CFWC has a history rooted in supporting youth philanthropy. In 1998, just three years after CFWC’s founding, the organization launched a Youth Advisory Council (YAC), which engaged students in grades 8-12 from local school districts in learning about community issues. Early leaders at CFWC set up an endowed fund to support this youth engagement effort. 

In 2017, CFWC made a renewed commitment to engaging youth voice. CFWC launched a youth engagement program to better engage a diverse cross-section of youth from Westmoreland County. This program is supported by grant funding from The Heinz Endowments.

Youth Philanthropy Internship Program

The Summer Youth Philanthropy Internship Program (YPIP) is a 7-week paid internship program for high school juniors and seniors in Westmoreland County. A replication of the Heinz Endowments successful program, the purpose of the internship is to involve Westmoreland County youth in learning about philanthropy, interacting with local nonprofit organizations, and helping to address pressing community needs. The internship culminates with youth evaluating grant proposals from local nonprofit organizations and awarding $70,000 in grant funding.

Youth Intern Program RFPs are now Open!

The following RFPs were designed by our high-school aged Youth Philanthropy Interns, who are completing their 7-week internship program at the Community Foundation this summer. Our youth interns have chosen to provide grants to organizations addressing the following:

  • Fostering Teenage Support Systems – For projects or programs that specifically address the need for functioning support systems in the lives of teenagers whose families fall under 200% of the federal poverty line. The goal is to provide teenagers living under the poverty line with support systems through mentoring programs, therapeutic services, and community involvement programs. Grants will be in the range of $5,000-$20,000. Fostering Teenage Support System s Program Guidelines
  • The Next Generation: Education, Opportunity, Action – For projects or programs that focus on promoting stability and a path to self-sufficiency in teens and young adults, through mental health services, physical health and wellness services, workforce development services, and/or college preparation services. The goal is to provide teens and young adults with the information and resources needed to become successful adults. Grants will be in the range of $5,000-$20,000. Next Generation Program Guidelines

All grant applications must be completed through the Community Foundation’s online system and are due by midnight EST on Sunday, July 29. You can access your existing organizational profile, or create a new one.  Program guidelines for both RFPs can be found above.

Access Online Grant Portal

Selected applicants will be notified by Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018, and will be asked to send an organization representative to a Check Presentation Ceremony at 5 p.m. at the Community Foundation Office on Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018.

Any questions regarding the RFPs or eligibility can be directed to Please share this information with any organizations you think might be interested in applying for this funding opportunity!


For more information about our youth philanthropy efforts, please call 724-836-4400 or contact us via email: