Anchorage Youth
Development Coalition

Youth Matter Grants

Youth Matter Grants are mini grants given to youth-led projects to build safety, foster supportive youth-adult relationships, and make a difference in the community. Mattering matters! When youth know that they matter to their community, they are less likely to engage in risky, unsafe behaviors, and more likely to display higher levels of connectedness and mental wellbeing. 

Creating projects that make a difference: Your proposal must focus on one of three specific themes: wellness, transportation safety, and underage drinking prevention. You will also define the community you wish to impact,  and what difference you’d like to make within that group.  You must demonstrate a commitment to incorporating best practices for achieving high quality programs.  If funded, AYDC will offer training and supports to build a project that will address the above goals and make a difference!

Grant funding limits: Each project is limited to a maximum of $5,000.

Our Focus: Projects are intended to support youth-led initiatives that make a difference in the community. Projects will receive higher scores that involve youth in leadership roles, in decision-making, and project proposal development and implementation.

Applications are currently closed. Please check back this fall for details about the next round of Youth Matter Grants. In the mean time, you can check out our most recent Youth Matter Grant projects down below!

Goals for Projects

We are looking to support projects that address the following goals:


Youth want to live in a community that is both physically and emotionally safe, allowing them to be themselves.

Support, Respect, Fairness

Youth want to be treated fairly and with respect by adults. Having friendly, supportive, and positive relationships with adults provides the right role models to empower youth.

Make a Difference

Youth want to be engaged and make a difference. This may be through providing impactful opportunities and service- or civic-based activities. Meaningful engagement includes opportunities for service- or civic-based activities and involvement in decision-making, leadership, and project implementation.

Youth Matter Grant Showcase

Most Recent

Click the image above to view more!

The Alaska Youth Orchestra produced a short film that explores the benefits of mentorship between Anchorage Youth Symphony musicians and the AYO Symphony School and/or Camp Fire participants at sites where AYO is providing music programming.


Youth from the YANA(You Are Not Alone) club at Begich Middle School met in the spring to work with a trauma dog organization and learn about how to support others in post-traumatic situations. The youth at Begich will be continuing this project in the fall by assembling trauma baskets to have ready to distribute to families and schools when traumatic events arise.


Click the image above to listen!

The Alaska Youth Orchestra produced a short film that explores the benefits of mentorship between Anchorage Youth Symphony musicians and the AYO Symphony School and/or Camp Fire participants at sites where AYO is providing music programming.

"By incorporating (Alaska Native studies) into our educational framework, we can foster empathy, understanding, and a drive for positive change."

Click the image above to view!

Anchorage Youth Vote Created a PSA campaign around Civil Discourse designed to educate and engage young people in conversation. Some of the questions they asked were, “Why is civil discourse important?  Is civil discourse missing in today’s political climate? How can youth inspire greater civility and understanding in our schools, communities, and beyond?” Youth Vote members scripted the PSAs, worked with a graphic designer and film editor to produce the PSAs, and then the messages were shared on social media and in area high school classrooms.  In addition to the PSAs, the youth updated and improved their online voter toolkit for the 2023 municipal election and shared this with local middle and high schools.  



1 – 2  minute video infomercial on social media

"Our project empowered youth to make a difference ... They're change-makers!"

Safe Driving Messages for Youth

Series of videos and internet/social media platform interactions that tell an educational, parabolic story in a fun, puzzling way. An ad spot will direct viewers to the website that continues the game. Ad and website will contain distracted driving messaging.

This has been a wonderful experience and I'm interested in stretching the boundaries of the types of projects that can be done with the grant.


Safe Driving Messages for Youth

An audio drama that deals with issues of appropriation, colonialism and othering. By thinking about how these themes affect indigenous cultures, youth involved will have the opportunity to work through these important issues in a thoughtful and creative way.

ATMI youth producers led this project from start to finish. We acted as storytellers, troubleshooters and cultural ambassadors.


A short film that explores the realities of pandemic music education and performance as well as the value of music in the lives of youth. Share the film with 3-5 ASD high school music programs.

This was the first time Alaska Youth Orchestra's Performing Directors have taken on a wellness project like this, and the experience was exceedingly positive.



Create a toolkit on how to advocate for change locally and nationally. Create and lead a workshop on Youth Advocacy/ local and congressional advocacy. Register young people to vote on Presidents Day. And a possible meet and greet with one of our Senators.

"The group of individuals that helped create and facilitate the workshop are grateful for the opportunity and learned skills. The young people loved the conversation that we decided as the Anchorage Youth Task Force and CHA we will continue twice a month open conversations with the young people.


Create the “I am Youth Vote’ campaign designed to inspire and motivate young people to get engaged in community problem solving. Improve voter tools on our website for the 2022 municipal election and share with classrooms in 3-5 middle and/or high schools.

Youth Vote provided meaningful engagement during the development of this project by including youth in decision-making,leadership, and project implementation. We created peer-education and peer-empowerment resources specifically designed to increase feelings of youth mattering in Anchorage.



Youth interns and organization representative will facilitate lessons, activities, and students reflections throughout a series of afterschool workshops. Maintain a weekly social media campaign to document learnings from the class.

Our youth leaders helped shape this project from the beginning of the process, starting with developing the grant application and vision for the class



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Contact Us

Center for Safe Alaskans

4241 B Street, Suite 100
Anchorage, AK 99503

Phone: (907) 929-3939

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