The Power of Youth Challenge: Youth Leading Racial Healing is a leadership and service opportunity supporting youth-designed projects that promote racial equity and address systemic racism. The Challenge provides young people (ages 13-19) across the U.S. with the opportunity to identify a need in their communities related to racial healing and apply for a $250 grant to support a (COVID-safe) service project. In addition to building their own leadership, service, and career skills, grant winners will have the opportunity to increase understanding, communication, caring, and respect within their communities through service projects that address racial division and injustice.

The Challenge, made possible with generous support from The Allstate Foundation, launched on Tuesday, January 19, 2021, the National Day of Racial Healing.  Funded projects  may  encompass a range of activities—from establishing a school anti-racism committee to bolstering the availability of books and resources by racially and ethnically diverse authors in a local library.  

Together, these youth-led service projects will: 

  1. Reinforce and honor our common humanity, while celebrating the distinct differences that make our communities vibrant.  
  2. Acknowledge the deep racial divisions that exist in America and empower young people to curate experiences that help people of all ages start to heal.   
  3. Engage young people from all racial and ethnic groups in genuine efforts to increase understanding, communication, caring, and respect for one another.  
  4. Activate young people to play an important role in addressing systemic racism in their communities through service.  


Young people can begin submitting their project ideas now  through April 30, 2021. Projects will be evaluated and funded on a rolling basis. 

Projects should: 

  • Respond to an identified need in their community related to promoting racial equity and/or healing 

  • Have tangible, concrete outcomes 

Projects should not:  

  • Be overtly political in nature and/or relate to a specific political party 

  • Center around boycotts and/or campaign against something 


To be eligible for the program, individuals and/or teams must meet the following criteria: 

  • All young people ages 13 – 19 who want to improve their communities are eligible to apply.  

  • Applicants must live in the U.S. 

  • Participants must agree to report on project progress and reflect on their project’s impact. 

  • Projects must follow  CDC's guidelines for social distancing for both the applicants’ and their project audiences’ health and wellbeing.  


All applications must contain the following information. 

  • Full applicant name 

  • Location: state or territory, city town or county 

  • Contact information – address, email, text/social - and a preference for how you want to be contacted. 

  • Project Name 

  • Project description – short and simple. 

  • Why 

  • What & how 

  • When 

  • How could you spend $250 to accomplish your plan 

  • Racial Healing  

  • What does racial healing mean to you? 

  • How will your project address racial division and injustice? 

  • Keeping the Promise – what we ask of you: An agreement to follow-up with APA and report back on the progress of your project, which includes: 

  • Checking in with APA leaders as the project is ongoing (at least twice; more help is available if requested) 

  • Participating in technical assistance (webinars, Instagram Live, etc.) 

  • Promoting project on social media channels using #PowerofYouth and #HowWeHeal 

  • Participating in APA storytelling about your project through photos, videos, interviews, and other media that captures your initiative and outcomes. 

  • Speaking to media about projects (if requested). Coaching will be provided. 



Latest Resources

National Day of Racial Healing Talking about Racism, Racial Equity and Racial Healing with Friends, Family, Colleagues and Neighbors
The National Day of Racial Healing centers around experiences rooted in truth-telling, offering people, organizations and communities a day set aside for racial healing, bringing people together to take collective action for a more just and equitable world. Racial healing recognizes…
W. K. Kellogg Foundation Resources for National Day of Racial Healing
This Implementation Guidebook will help individuals, organizations, communities and First Nations in planning, implementing and evaluating the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation efforts
Youth Engagement Discussion Guide
Students across the country are feeling the effects of a rapidly changing world—from the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on their lives and learning environments, to widespread uprisings in response to ongoing systemic racism. This discussion guide offers topical discussion questions…