High school students in DeKalb County are encouraged to join Youth Engaged in Philanthropy (YEP), a youth-led committee of the DeKalb County Community Foundation. In an effort to be a county-wide committee, YEP is still seeking members from the following high schools: Kishwaukee Education Consortium (KEC), Hiawatha, Hinckley-Big Rock, Home School, Sandwich, and Somonauk.

YEP is open to all high school students in DeKalb County, IL. Through monthly meetings and volunteer opportunities, YEP builds leadership, communication, social, and analytical skills. Members are familiarized with nonprofits, build an understanding of philanthropy, and are introduced to grantmaking. A large portion of the year is spent on grantmaking (YEP Grants), where members learn to analyze grant applications, conduct site visits, and identify the potential impact on other youth in DeKalb County. Last year, the YEP committee allocated and granted $14,005 to nine community organizations for a variety of youth serving programs and projects.

“Being a part of YEP has really changed my perspective of what community and giving means,” said Alyssa Scudder of Indian Creek High School. “It's been a truly eye-opening experience to see and understand the many issues that we as youth can help to address and improve in the community.”

Youth interested in joining must submit an application prior to the Friday, September 6, deadline. To keep the focus on being a county-wide committee, a cap is in place for membership per high school. Learn more or apply online at For questions or additional information, please contact YEP Staff Advisor Noah Nordbrock at 815-748-5383 or