News Release

First Nations Development Institute

First Nations Development Institute (First Nations) today announced it is accepting proposals for the Native Youth and Culture Fund (NYCF) for programs that focus on youth and that support the perpetuation of traditional ecological knowledge, spirituality, and the intergenerational transfer of knowledge systems, resulting in compassion, respect, dignity, reverence for nature, and care for each other and the Earth.

First Nations expects to award approximately 30 grants of $5,000 to $25,000 each for general operating support.

First Nations began the Native Youth and Culture Fund in 2002 with the belief that Native youth represent the future of Native communities and that their health and well-being determine the future overall health and well-being of a community. By investing in youth and giving them a sense of place and tradition in the community, a community ensures that it will have bright and capable future leaders. The Native Youth and Culture Fund grant program is made possible through generous funding from the Kalliopeia Foundation and other entities. 

For the 2021 grant cycle, First Nations is seeking proposals that focus on one or more of these four priority areas:

  • Preserving, strengthening, or renewing cultural and/or spiritual practices, beliefs, and values.
  • Engaging both youth and elders in activities that demonstrate methods for documenting traditional ecological knowledge systems, practices, and/or beliefs.
  • Increasing youth leadership and their capacity to lead through integrated educational or mentoring programs.
  • Increasing access to and sharing of cultural customs and beliefs through the use of appropriate technologies (traditional and/or modern), as a means of reviving or preserving tribal language, arts, history or other culturally relevant topics.

This funding is available as general operating support and can be used to build organizational/programmatic capacity, increase sustainability, or for specific youth project-focused activities.

The Request for Proposals can be found here, and the application deadline is Thursday, August 19, 2021. All applications must be submitted via the First Nations online grant application system.

Eligible entities include but are not limited to:

  • federal- and state-recognized tribal governments;
  • tribally-run programs;
  • tribal colleges; and
  • Native American-controlled 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations.

This program does not fund individuals or public schools. Organizations that are not a tribal government, 501(c)(3) or a Section 7871 must have a fiscal sponsor that is a qualifying entity. All entities that apply must be located in a tribal community or have very close ties to one or more tribal communities.

Q&A Application Webinar

Applicants wanting to learn more about this grant opportunity are welcome to join First Nations for a Q&A Webinar Tuesday, July 27, 2021 at 1 pm Mountain Time. Register here!

Questions regarding this grant opportunity can be directed to grantmaking@fir​stnations.org.

About First Nations Development Institute

For 40 years, using a three-pronged strategy of educating grassroots practitioners, advocating for systemic change, and capitalizing Indian communities, First Nations has been working to restore Native American control and culturally-compatible stewardship of the assets they own – be they land, human potential, cultural heritage or natural resources – and to establish new assets for ensuring the long-term vitality of Native American communities. First Nations serves Native American communities throughout the United States. For more information, visit www.firstnations.org.

Native Youth and Culture Fund - First Nations Development Institute