Grand Forks, North Dakota



A fifth-time winner of the 100 Best Communities for Young People competition, Grand Forks has shown its commitment to enhancing youth education by offering programs that provide safe places, paring educators with  students in need and providing community service opportunities for young people. Among these programs is Grand Forks’ Helping Hands Summer Camp, where young people gain work skills and give back to the community through volunteering. Through the Partners for Academic and Social Success program, at-risk students in Grand Forks meet with educators to discuss schoolwork and factors affecting students’ work. The program also connects students with 12 private businesses and about 50 nonprofit organizations for mentorships and internships.

Community Programs

  • CounterAct brings together law enforcement, families, school faculty and students to provide support and education to encourage students to make healthy behavior choices.
  • The Discovering and Integrating Voluntary Effective Resolutions Together (DIVERT) program helps offending youth and their families to address developmental challenges and offers an alternative to the Juvenile Justice system.
  • The Partners for Academic and Social success (PASS) program brings together educators and “at-risk” students for academic mentorship that helps young people achieve passing grades.
  • Defending Childhood: Protect, Heal, Thrive addresses the need to reduce children’s exposure to violence by providing safe places for local youth.
  • Helping Hands Summer Camp helps young people to gain work skills, perform community service and learn the value of volunteerism in partnership with agencies, schools and the community.

Youth Voices

The diversity of extracurricular activities in school makes it easy for students to get involved in something that interests them.


Students that participate on teams for “Relay for Life” learn at an early age how they can help in their community.