Youth Leaders of Tomorrow… Today
From our inception, St. Croix Foundation has been committed to developing high impact programming for our most important community stakeholders—our youth. In 2009, we formally established a Youth Advisory Council (YAC) with start-up funding provided through the St. Croix Foundation’s Matt Miller Fund.
Comprising local middle and high school students, our YAC is teaching members about philanthropy and shaping them into burgeoning grant makers, as they award grants to youth-led community projects. Council members are also identifying ways to ensure that the voices of youth are heard, organizing youth forums for their peers and exploring a range of relevant issues like career development, mentoring and civics.
Global Youth Network
In 2014, our Youth Advisory Council members were selected by the National Youth Leadership Council to present their most recent work, the Global Youth Network, at their annual conference in Washington D.C. The Global Youth Network was entirely conceptualized and designed by youth with adult mentors assisting with technical implementation of an online interactive website. Today, the Global Youth Network links youth, providing new opportunities in career development, civic engagement, and mentoring, as well as identifying and promoting youth leadership to solve challenges in our community. [link to Global Youth Network goes to www.yacstx.org]
Surveying Our Youth
In 2012, the Council released the results of their self-designed youth questionnaire to over 900 youth on St. Croix. Their Answers for Change Survey illuminated the needs and challenges of young people in our community. Results can be viewed here. Today, YAC continues to guide St. Croix Foundation by ensuring that our future plans are geared toward more relevant supports for young people.