January 18, 2021  – United Way SIBC, GenNext Kelowna and the Central Okanagan Foundation (COF) have partnered again this year to offer Youth Initiative Grants. Youth who are improving their communities have a chance to receive project funding of up to $2,000.

These grants are available to young people up to age 25 who are partnering with an organization to create positive change in their local community. The partner organization can be a school, church or charity and youth must reside in either the Central or South Okanagan Similkameen in order to apply. Applications are available until the March 2, 2021 deadline.

“Youth in the Central and South Okanagan want opportunities to have a positive impact in their communities. They care about their communities, the environment, inclusiveness, homelessness, youth engagement and mental health,” explains Co-Chairs Charmaine Pearce and Zach Webster. “Youth Initiative Grants give youth the resources to make those positive impacts possible, and GenNext Kelowna is proud to be a funding partner and part of the granting process every year.”

Last year’s recipients included youth-led projects by Enactus Okanagan College – Green Screen and Silver Surfers programs, CRIS Adaptive Adventures – Scavenger Hunt and YMCA – Youth Advisory Council.  More info and pictures at the link below.

“The Youth Initiative Grants provide an opportunity for youth to have their voices heard and make an impact in areas that matter the most to them,” says Abbie Norrish, Grants & Community Initiatives Coordinator with Central Okanagan Foundation. “It’s inspiring to see the passion that the youth have for their projects and their community.”

Application packages are available at: https://unitedwaysibc.com/how-we-help/kids/youth-initiative-grants/. For further information, contact Abbie Norrish at Central Okanagan Foundation for Central Okanagan inquiries or Sherry Ferronato at United Way SIBC for South Okanagan inquiries.

About GenNext Kelowna:

GenNext is an affinity group of United Way SIBC consisting of young, emerging leaders who are looking to support our community in a meaningful way. GenNext’s Board of Directors is made up of professionals who are passionate about volunteerism and furthering the United Way’s mission. For more information about GenNext Kelowna, visit: http://gennextkelowna.com

About Central Okanagan Foundation:

The Central Okanagan Foundation Youth endowment fund supports projects and programs from Lake Country to Peachland that are youth-driven, collaborative and impactful. For more info: http://www.centralokanaganfoundation.org

About United Way SIBC:

The United Way mission is to improve lives and build community by engaging individuals and mobilizing collective action. For 70 years, we’ve been working to create opportunities for a better life for everyone in the Okanagan, Columbia, Shuswap and Similkameen. Every dollar raised here stays in our community and touches the lives of over 75,000 vulnerable children, families and seniors every year. For more info, visit: www.unitedwaysibc.com or call  1-855-232-1321.

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For more information, please contact:

Abbie Norrish, Grants & Community Initiatives Coordinator

Central Okanagan Foundation




Sherry Ferronato, Community Investment and Wellness Director

United Way Southern Interior BC


Toll-free: 1-855-232-1321