Through an opportunity provided by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, GACF was able to start an arm of our community foundation in May of 1993 to specifically provide youth participation in philanthropy. That group is called the Greenville Youth Advisory Council (GYAC). Locally raised funds combined with matching funds from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation provides an endowment fund of over $1,000,000 for the GYAC to use to award grants that benefit youth-related needs in the community. Members of this very active and involved group come from the Greenville area and are learning first-hand about the importance of community involvement and philanthropy.

GYAC Mission: Empowering youth. Enhancing life. Enriching the community.

Interested in being a GYAC member? GYAC Membership is opened annually. Contact Kristen Kohn, Director of Community Impact with questions about GYAC membership.

The GACF Board of Trustees, GYAC Advisors, and staff strive to mentor the members of the GYAC in hopes of sharing their experiences in the nonprofit world generally and in philanthropy as a facet of a successful, fulfilled community citizen. Trustees, Advisors and staff also learn greatly from the youth’s perspectives and passions.

This cycle is open to greater Greenville area nonprofits with programs or projects that fall within the identified needs of area youth. Every three years, GYAC surveys local students to identify needs, and compiles the results into a Needs Assessment, serving to guide grant funding where it is most needed. The GYAC priority needs include: 

Mental Health
Drunk Driving
Bullying/ Cyberbullying
Drug Abuse
Physical/ Emotional Abuse
Pollution & Littering

Sexual Harassment/ Assault
Violence/ Gun Violence

GYAC utilizes criteria to assist with decisions in the grantmaking process. Some of the major considerations include:

  • Number of area youth affected by the grant
  • Area where youth will be most affected by the grant (geographic location)
  • Ability of the grant to fulfill the needs of area youth
  • Youth involvement with the grant application