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Serving DeKalb County, IL Since 1993

Welcome to Youth Engaged in Philanthropy (YEP)!

Youth Engaged in Philanthropy (YEP) begins its ninth year as a Community Foundation initiative in the fall of 2017. High school youth from across DeKalb County participate in monthly meetings, leadership activities, and volunteer outreach events to understand the need for philanthropy in DeKalb County. The youth are familiarized with the nonprofit sector and introduced to grantmaking. Through youth led meetings, the YEP committee learns to analyze grant applications, conduct site visits, and identify the potential impact on other youth in DeKalb County. YEP grants support projects and programs that benefit youth in DeKalb County.

Upcoming meetings/events include:

  • YEP Meet & Greet - Sunday, August 26, from 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. Additional details coming soon!
  • YEP Orientation - Sunday, September 23, from 2:00 - 4:30 p.m. Additional details coming soon!

2017/2018 YEP Year in Review

What is YEP?


How do I join Youth Engaged in Philanthropy (YEP)?
It's easy to become a member of YEP! Simply fill out both the YEP Membership Application and a Commitment Agreement. If you're still a little unsure about joining, be sure to attend the Meet & Greet and Orientation to learn more about the program.
What happens at the Meet & Greet?
The Meet & Greet is a chance for youth interested in joining YEP to meet the Executive Committee and returning YEP members. The executive committee will lead a short presentation to explain YEP's purpose and encourage everyone to join, but other than that, it’s an informal social event.Learn more.
What happens during YEP Orientation?
Orientation is the first required meeting for YEP members. The meeting will explain YEP's purpose by showcasing YEP's achievements in prior years. Members should plan to participate in a community-wide Scavenger Hunt. The majority of the meeting will be spent travelling in adult chaperoned vehicles to various past YEP grantees. Learn more.
What is a typical YEP meeting like?
YEP meetings in October, November, December, January, February, and March, are held on a weeknight from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. All meetings are led by the youth executive committee and held in The Freight Room at the DeKalb County Community Foundation. Each meeting will feature a theme or speaker to help youth members understand the many facets of grantmaking. The August (Meet & Greet), September (Orientation), April (Allocation) and May (Grants Reception) meetings are a little different in content, meeting time, and expectations. Learn more.
Where are YEP meetings held?
YEP meetings will be held in The Freight Room, located inside the DeKalb County Community Foundation at 475 DeKalb Avenue, Sycamore.
Does YEP meet on Sundays?
Some special YEP meetings are held on Sundays. The Meet & Greet, Orientation, and April Grant Allocation are usually held on Sundays because they are longer meetings. The monthly meetings from October to March will be held on a weeknight from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. The Grants Reception, held in May, will be on a weekday during the early evening. Learn more.
Can I join YEP as a Freshman?
Any high school student in DeKalb County can join YEP. If you are a freshman looking for an activity that will help you connect with the community, volunteer, and make friends with youth from other schools, YEP might be a good fit! Learn more.
I live outside of DeKalb County, but attend a high school in DeKalb County. Can I join YEP?
Yes! The YEP Executive Committee encourages high school students from Indian Creek, Sandwich, Somonauk, Hinckley-Big Rock, and Hiawatha high schools to join YEP. EVEN if you live outside of DeKalb County. Learn more.
I live in DeKalb County, but attend high school outside of DeKalb County. Can I join YEP?
Yes! All high school aged residents of the DeKalb County are invited to join YEP. Learn more.
I am homeschooled. Can I join YEP?
Yes! All high school aged residents of DeKalb County are invited to join YEP. Homeschool students who have participated in YEP love it because of the many opportunities it offers for meeting peers with similar interests from all over DeKalb County. Learn more.
What does YEP do?
YEP is a group of high school students that learn about volunteerism, philanthropy, leadership, and grantmaking through monthly meetings, outreach events, and a special youth-led grant program. The pinnacle of the YEP year is a grant allocation meeting in which the youth members are responsible for allocating approximately $11,000 to youth serving nonprofits in DeKalb County. Members attend monthly meetings to learn the roles of community foundations and nonprofits and how to distribute the YEP grant dollars to address needs of youth in DeKalb County.
What is a YEP Outreach Event and why do all members have to attend one?
Outreach events are volunteer opportunities that YEP members participate in as a group. Some events we have volunteered at in the past include: Feed My Starving Children Mobile Pack Day, Gracie Center Popcorn Harvest, Altrusa Spelling Bee, Northern Illinois Food Bank Mobile Food Pantry, YSB Royal Children's Ball, and more. All YEP members are encouraged to participate in at least one outreach event to familiarize with each other and increase understanding of nonprofits. Learn more.
When can my child join the YEP committee?
YEP is open to new members at the beginning of each new school year. The Meet & Greet and Orientation are the first YEP events of the year, and the best time to commit to YEP. New members are not usually accepted after the October meeting. Some special cases or exceptions will be considered at the discretion of the YEP executive committee.
What is Philanthropy?
Come to a YEP meeting and find out!

Get Connected

Facebook Group - Youth Engaged in Philanthropy

Instagram - youthengagedinphilanthropy