Applications for the
2020-21 school year ARE NOW CLOSED

History of the Youth Philanthropy Board in Spartanburg County

With the knowledge that youth must be engaged, informed, and given a sense of empowerment in order to directly shape the communities in which they live, United Way of the Piedmont launched the Youth Philanthropy Board in 2014. The Youth Philanthropy Board provides high school aged students the opportunity to:

  • learn about community indicators
  • develop critical thinking & leadership skills
  • connect with community leaders
  • gain hands-on experience with fund development and grant-making

The Youth Philanthropy Board is made up of 12-22 high school juniors and seniors from Spartanburg County who demonstrate strong leadership abilities in their schools and communities. Since its inception, the Youth Philanthropy Board has granted awards to youth-serving programs in amounts ranging from $500 to $1,000.

The Importance of the Youth Philanthropy Board

Not only does the Youth Philanthropy Board provide funding opportunities to deserving youth programs in Spartanburg County, but Board members also benefit from their philanthropic experience by working in partnership with adults to lead and support change. Youth Philanthropy Board members serve in significant decision-making roles, which lead to:

  • increased knowledge of the community
  • stronger social skills
  • increased capacity to make a difference

In addition, the Youth Philanthropy Board has multiple benefits for the community overall by:

  • adding a youth voice in the community
  • expanding young people’s sense of community
  • increasing the visibility of youth
  • providing more opportunities to increase skills

Ultimately, the Youth Philanthropy Board provides a way to make connections, make a difference, learn responsibility, and be a good citizen.

Serving on the Youth Philanthropy Board

As Board Members, high school juniors and seniors meet monthly to learn about community issues, connect with community leaders, develop strategies for being positive and responsible agents of change, and invest money in the form of micro-grants into youth programs in our community. Meetings take place on the second Tuesday of each month during the school year from 5-6:30pm at United Way of the Piedmont.

Any high school junior or senior in Spartanburg County who can demonstrate leadership within their school or community is welcome to apply. Community leaders, teachers, and school staff are encouraged to nominate students to serve on the Board.

For more information about the Youth Philanthropy Board click here. To nominate a Junior or Senior in High School to serve or request a paper application, contact Savannah Ray at or 864-612-6104.