Mini Grants

The Oswego City-County Youth Bureau has a limited amount of funding available for mini-grants for 2021. These funds are, in part, from the NYS Office of Children and Family Services.

The Youth Bureau Board of Directors is soliciting proposals from not-for-profit community organizations in Oswego County to support projects that provide activities for youth during non school hours (after school, nights, weekends, school breaks, summer). These mini-grants will be funded with Youth Development funds.

The criteria for mini-grants:

  • Not-for-profit community organizations include agencies, schools, libraries, municipalities, associations, and churches.
  • Mini-grant projects may serve any age range of youth and any geographic area. In allocating funds, the Youth Bureau Board of Directors will work to serve a broad age range of youth spread across Oswego County.
  • Mini-grants must be open to targeted youth who are not required to pay a fee in order to participate. Mini-grant funds CANNOT support any activity where youth or their families must pay a fee for a venue or as part of a program where a mini-grant activity would take place.
  • Mini-grants must meet the definitions of Youth Development funds (see below).
  • The project must be time limited, with a defined beginning and end.
  • Projects should address the diverse interests of youth including but not limited to:
    • Artistic expression (example: music, dance, writing, literature, drama, visual arts, etc.)
    • Recreation (example: introduction to a new activity such as fishing, camping, snow shoeing, etc.)
    • Leisure time (example: youth planning a dance or one day fun event)
    • Educational (example: guest speaker or hands-on activity)
    • Youth leadership (example: one day youth conference)
  • Projects should have clear, measurable goals.
  • Projects and all activities must be non-secretarian.
  •  Applicants are encouraged to partner with other local youth service organizations.
  • Applicants are encouraged to use the skills, talents and assets of youth in Oswego County by involving youth in the planning and implementation of the project.
  • Mini-grant projects may apply for up to $1,000 maximum.
  • Mini-grant funds cannot be used for equipment, capital improvement, to off-set wages of existing staff, or to cover administrative overhead.
  • Priority will be given to mini-grants that serve as seed money for future activities, and for projects that have a long-lasting impact.

 These are some examples of successful Youth Development mini-grants that have been funded:

  • Summer theme days at an existing program that serves a large number of children.
  • Afterschool educational workshops
  • Earth day project that involved youth in the planning and implementation
  • Teen ambassador youth leadership event

 These are examples of applications received that have NOT been funded in the past:

  • Routine field trips to places that are readily accessible (i.e. field trips to the MOST, zoo, theme park, etc.).
  • Field trips and/or projects that are routinely done and have been funded with other funding sources in the past (i.e. existing program’s annual camping trip).
  • Proposals that would serve only youth enrolled in a program or venue that they paid a fee for (i.e. children in a paid summer day camp, children attending a festival that has an entrance fee).
  • Activities that include fund raising.

 Proposals are to be electronically submitted to All funds must be expended by December 31, 2021. 

2021 Mini Grant Application

Youth Development: 
Youth Development programs shall provide community-level services designed to promote positive youth development.  Further provides that such programs may include, but not limited to: programs that promote physical and emotional wellness, educational achievement or civic, family and community engagement; family support services; services to prevent juvenile delinquency, child abuse and neglect; services to avert family crises; and services to assist youth in need of crisis intervention or respite services.  Youth Development funded programs should include:

  • Involvement of youth in leadership and program planning activities, program implementation and evaluation.
  • Provide a range of youth in leadership and program planning activities, program implementation and evaluation.
  • Provide opportunities where young people feel supported and safe.
  • Focus on asset building by supporting positive values, social competencies, positive identity, and educational commitment.

Questions about Mini Grants?
E-mail Tiffany Halstead
Oswego City-County Youth Bureau/Parks and Recreation
70 Bunner St. 
Oswego, NY 13126