In Youth We Trust Council

Youth granting youth the power to lead and change our community.

In Youth We Trust is a youth philanthropy program of the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois. Established with a grant from the Ford Foundation in 1994 and endowed by a local donor, this program teaches grantmaking, volunteerism, and leadership skills to today’s youth, preparing them to be the positive change of tomorrow.

The In Youth We Trust Council is made up of high-school-age youth from Boone, Ogle, Stephenson, and Winnebago Counties. Council members engage in direct community service** as well as philanthropy; the Council is directly involved in the In Youth We Trust Grant Program administration. They help set grant policy, review youth inspired service project proposals, and will recommend distribution of grant awards. This year, the IYWT Council will distribute up to $40,000 to community projects that benefit local youth. For the 2020-2021 school year, in recognition that COVID-19 may impact the feasibility of youth-led projects and events, IYWT will have two grant cycles: one for proposals written by nonprofit organizations (adults) for the purpose of serving youth, and one for proposals written by youth for youth-led, youth-benefiting projects

View IYWT Council 2020 - 2021 Schedule    

**During the 2020-2021 IYWT program year in-person activities and volunteering may not be possible due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Check out the 2020 IYWT Council Membership Flyer!

In 1993, the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois was one of 20 community foundations selected by the Ford Foundation to be part of a program called Changing Communities: Diverse Needs. The Foundation suggested to Ford that the best way to bring a community together was to bring youth together.

In the summer of 1994, the Community Foundation gathered a diverse group of youth inspired by the notion that youth could partner with other youth to improve their community. The In Youth We Trust grant program began in 1995 and since then, the In Youth We Trust Council has recommended the distribution of over $500,000 to local youth led organizations.

The In Youth We Trust Council, made up of high-school-age youth from across the region, engages young people in community service and philanthropy by giving them resources and opportunities to help solve problems affecting their peers and their quality of life.

In Youth We Trust Council members are directly involved in the In Youth We Trust Grant Program. They help set grant policy, review youth inspired service project proposals, and recommend distribution of up to $40,000 this year in grants to selected youth projects. For the 2020-2021 school year, in recognition that COVID-19 may impact the feasibility of youth-led projects and events, IYWT will have two grant cycles: one for proposals written by nonprofit organizations (adults) for the purpose of serving youth, and one for proposals written by youth for youth-led, youth-benefiting projects

The IYWT Council meets approximately one Saturday morning a month during the school year. As part of the IYWT grant process each year, In Youth We Trust Council members review grant applications for youth projects, evaluate the applications, and interview the applicants. In addition to participating in the grant review program, members take part in many community-building activities** including volunteer work and planning community events for youth.

In addition to attending required meetings and activities, IYWT Council members:

  • Learn and understand the purpose of IYWT and the mission of the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois;
  • Learn grantmaking guidelines and procedures;
  • Prepare for and participate in grant review meetings;
  • Evaluate applications based on guidelines, community impact, and budget;
  • Identify and inform the IYWT Council of the needs of youth in the community;
  • Advocate for the IYWT program. 

**During the 2020-2021 IYWT program year in-person activities and volunteering may not be possible due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Step One: review the IYWT Council Informational Letter
Step Two: Attend the IYWT Council Kickoff Meeting, held VIRTUALLY on Saturday, September 19th, 2020, at 9:00 a.m.
Step Three: Decide you’re willing and able to attend most meetings and activities
Step Four: Complete and submit the membership application by October 1st and submit a letter of recommendation no later than October 8th, 2020
Step Five: Applicants will be notified prior to the October 17th meeting of their acceptance.

The deadline for joining In Youth We Trust this year is October 1, 2020. If you’re interested in joining or have questions, contact Ciara Stahly.

2020 – 2021 IYWT COUNCIL MEMBERS

Charlie Andres – Belvidere North High School
Lindsay Arreguin – Boylan High School
Macy Barkley - Freeport High School
Hassan Bates - Auburn High School
Cam Berrios - Rockford Lutheran High School
Casey Bohn – Hononegah High School
Abbey Buchanan – Rockford Lutheran High School
Ariana Castillo – Harlem High School
Trell Chapman – Legacy Academy of Excellence
Jaida Cunningham - Rockford Lutheran High School
Sophie DiBenedetto - Boylan Catholic High School
Clayton Drake – Hononegah High School
 

Ella Ellingson – North Boone High School
Finn Enright – Boylan Catholic High School
Isabella Enright - Boylan Catholic High School
Jay Gupta - Auburn High School
Niles Hite - Rockford Lutheran High School
Arun Kumar - Hononegah High School
Jackie Kuroda - Guilford High School
Trinity Lambert - Belvidere North High School
Crystal Lee - Boylan Catholic High School
Emi Manaligod - Boylan Catholic High School
Nadhia Manthuruthil – Boylan Catholic High School
Luke Manthuruthil - Boylan Catholic High School

Angel Nasanbuyam - Boylan Catholic High School
Madison Ost - Rochelle Township High School
Jalen Robinson - Rockford Lutheran High School
Maddie Seuring – Rockford Christian High School
Liv Stram - Rockford Lutheran High School
Megan Thiravong - Rochelle Township High School
DJ Trenhaile – Boylan High School
Shreya Vattem – Hononegah High School
Jazmine White – Guilford High School
Kayla White - Boylan Catholic High School
Miah Woods - Guilford High School
Adalia Yeung - Rockford Lutheran High School

2020 – 2021 EXECUTIVE COUNCIL

Nadhia Manthuruthil – President
DJ Trenhaile - Secretary
Casey Bohn – Marketing Chair

2020 – 2021 COMMUNITY ADVISORS

Joanna Bares
Derek Dreier
Annie Hobson
M. Beth Thacker

IYWT 25th Anniversary Logo

 

In Youth We Trust, the youth philanthropy program of the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois, has been promoting leadership, volunteerism, and philanthropy with youth in northern Illinois since 1994.

Questions? Interested in learning more about IYWT? Contact Ciara!

Ciara Stahly
Ciara Stahly
Program Officer, Staff Liaison to IYWT Council
Phone: 779-210-8209
Email: Ciara Stahly