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Community Foundation Invites High School Students to Join Youth Advisory Council

[Photo caption: Benzie area students participating in the Community Foundation’s Youth Advisory Council (YAC) Program, pictured with YAC Advisor, Gina Thornbury.]

The Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation invites local high school students to join its Youth Advisory Council (YAC). The Community Foundation’s YAC program involves young people across the five-county region as leaders and grantmakers, with participants acting as advisors to the Foundation’s Youth Endowment. In this role, YAC students within their county groups annually review grant applications and recommend grant awards.

“Our YAC program has been going strong since 1993,” said Gina Thornbury, YAC Advisor and Program and Grants Manager. “It’s been amazing to see the impact that our YAC students have had across our region—granting about $1.7 million total back out into the community to support youth causes.”

The Community Foundation’s YAC program offers students the chance to be decision makers for youth issues, needs, and opportunities; build leadership skills; earn community service hours; learn about local philanthropy; and give back to the community. All high school students (home, private, and public school) across the five-county region are invited to join. In particular, the Community Foundation is looking to increase participation of students from Benzie, Kalkaska, and Leelanau Counties.

“It's important for everyone to have a voice, including young people,” said Tucker Hubbard, YAC member and senior at Frankfort High School. “As a YAC member, I’ve enjoyed being able to have input into bettering our community. I am able to have a direct voice in how funds are allocated. It’s a great feeling to know that I can impact the organizations around me that need support.”

Interested high school students can complete a New YAC Member Interest Form on the Community Foundation’s website: www.gtrcf.org/about/youth-advisory-council-program. Students can also reach out to YAC Advisor, Gina Thornbury with questions at 231-935-4066 or gthornbury@gtrcf.org.