Seattle Foundation Blog

The Next Generation of Changemakers

We celebrate the young philanthropists of our Youth Grantmaking Board and the talented recipients of Seattle Foundation scholarships


June 19, 2019

YGB members give a check to Seattle Veterinary  YGB members present their grant to Seattle Veterinary

"We want to create change. We may be teenagers,
but we want to see that change through
and see our homeland better for it."

Student Katherine Muñoz-Castaño shared this hope for her generation at our recent 2019 Youth Celebration. As a leader of Seattle Foundation's Youth Grantmaking Board, she addressed the crowd there to celebrate both the board and Seattle Foundation scholarship recipients.

Young philanthropists and new ideas

The Youth Grantmaking Board provides the opportunity for young people learn how philanthropy can create positive change in their community. Students get to take the lead on all phases of grantmaking, from identifying issues to granting out the money. This year, the 21 members, representing 17 different high schools, focused on innovative solutions to homelessness.

At the event, grantees Seattle Veterinary Outreach and Samaritan said how important this support is.

Loren smith talking with students  Philanthropist and teacher Loren Smith talks with recipients of her scholarship

The board granted $9,200 to Seattle Veterinary Outreach to provide support through their mobile veterinary clinics to people and their pets who are experiencing homelessness. The YGB also awarded Samaritan $10,800 to provide general support to give more unsheltered individuals access to a smart wallet called a beacon. This new beacon technology connects people to goods and services through nonprofit organizations.

"We're grateful, because young people see the value in new ideas," said Chris Sun of Samaritan.

Scholarships paying it forward

We also celebrated the talented recipients of 2019 Seattle Foundation scholarships. Through the generosity of philanthropists, 274 students got funding for their post-secondary education. This year alone, philanthropists gave a total $1.3M this year to support some of our community's best and brightest.

Recipient Zuberi Wilson told the crowd how important this support has been. The founder of his scholarship, Bernie Minsk, was the first of his family to go to college. Minsk paid it forward, helping Zuberi begin his own academic career at Seattle University.

It's been an important journey for the politically active student. In his speech, Zuberi remembered how a store owner falsely accused him of shoplifting. He was inspired to take action through the Garfield High School Black Student Union, tackling racial profiling headfirst. Zuberi hopes to use his education to improve the justice system and become a judge.

Zuberi speaking  Zuberi Wilson shares his advice to students

A chance to celebrate the future

In addition to the speakers, guests celebrated the students with a jazz quartet from the Montlake Terrace Highschool Jazz Ensemble, food by Madres Catering and many photo opportunities for the proud families and students.

At Seattle Foundation, we're honored to be a small part of these future leaders' journeys. As Zuberi advised, "Follow your passion, stay true to yourself and lead a life of empathy and acceptance."

Next steps

To learn more about Seattle Foundation’s youth programs, please contact Philanthropic Associate Advisor Shannon Kopelva. You can also explore scholarship funds as part of our specialized services and check out the work of the Youth Grantmaking Board on our blog.

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For Philanthropists

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Children and youtheducationEventsHomelessnessscholarshipsYouth Grantmaking Board

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