Selected grantsSports-Based Youth Development

PCT encourages any organization considering a SBYD proposal submission to read these guidelines and the following FAQs in their entirety. If the organization is a fit for this funding area, please see our application guidelines for specific instructions on using and proposal requirements.

In 2009, at the suggestion of a trustee who had experienced the benefits of sports participation in his own life, Prince Charitable Trusts (PCT) began a pilot grantmaking program to fund youth sports organizations. PCT’s funding interest ran parallel to the emergence of Sports-Based Youth Development (SBYD), a field that combines the expertise and best program elements from youth development, mentoring, athletics and physical fitness, and academic enrichment.

Recent research highlights the benefits of SBYD. It contributes to improved health and fitness, but just as importantly, it helps youth become better at planning, coping with stress, and engaging in positive relationships with peers and adults. Such benefits may prove particularly crucial for youth living in under-resourced communities, who face risks and challenges like concentrated poverty, higher rates of obesity and other chronic health conditions, exposure to violence, and limited availability of afterschool and recreational activities.

PCT seeks to improve the circumstances and life prospects of youth through general operating grants to well established organizations in Chicago primarily focused on SBYD for disadvantaged youth. PCT gives preference to SBYD organizations serving middle-school-age youth. Preference is also given to organizations with coaches trained in youth development and/or that implement trauma-sensitive approaches to service delivery.

Established SBYD organization requirements

PCT considers established SBYD organizations serving primarily disadvantaged youth to be those that:

  • Have operated at least three years
  • Have at least one professional program staff person in addition to paid administrative staff
  • Have access to appropriate equipment and facilities
  • Serve a consistent group of school-age youth in most or all of its programming
  • Provide at least 90 minutes of programming per week for at least 20 weeks of the school year
  • Deliver services to a program population in which 75% or more of youth have family incomes at or below 200% of the federal poverty level or in schools where 75% or more of students are eligible for free and reduced price school lunch.

The SBYD organizations that PCT supports:

  • Promote physical and emotional well-being
  • Support youth as they develop positive identities, learn to negotiate challenges, and build confidence to pursue new opportunities
  • Provide instruction in skills related to at least one specific sport
  • Foster an age-appropriate and positive environment when competition is part of the program
  • Train coaches and program staff to deliver a consistent program model or curriculum and build positive relationships with youth
  • May provide or connect participants to academic supports and/or help them access higher education.

We have prepared answers to several SBYD-related questions.

Our organization serves youth with a variety of programs, including a large SBYD program. May it apply for a SBYD grant?
No. Due to limited resources, PCT has decided to focus exclusively on organizations who have SBYD as their primary focus, rather than organizations who provide a variety of services for youth and other clients (e.g., health programs, mental health counseling, ESL programs, etc.) and SBYD is just one of those programs.
Our organization offers afterschool drop-in programming every day that introduces youth to sports. May it apply to a SBYD grant?
Please see our requirements for established SBYD organizations in the guidelines. If your organization meets all the requirements, it may apply for a SBYD grant.
What do you mean by consistent group of school-age youth?
PCT means that the organization serves the same people for an entire program cycle (generally, at least a semester, often the full school year or over several years). PCT recognizes there may be some attrition or that there may be a good reason to add youth during a program cycle, but the organization’s purpose should be to work intensively with a consistent group over time rather than, for instance, run a drop-in program where the group of youth in attendance may vary significantly from day to day or week to week.
Our SBYD organization’s programming runs less than 90 minutes a week or for fewer than 20 weeks of the school year, but we plan to expand it if sufficient funding is available, may it apply for a grant?
If the organization is devoted to SBYD and it meets all the other requirements, please make an appointment to speak with us by phone about its specific situation. PCT may consider a proposal where, if funding is approved, the grant would be used to expand the program to meet the requirements.
Our SBYD organization has a program that serves disadvantaged youth, may it apply for program support for that program?
The organization as a whole must meet the requirements. If 75% or more of youth the organization serves have family incomes at or below 200% of the federal poverty level or come from schools where 75% or more of children are eligible for free and reduced price school lunch, then the organization may apply for a grant.
Our organization delivers recess programs that include sports. May it apply?
Although PCT recognizes the value of recess supports, its SBYD funding is not intended to support organizations whose sole or primary focus is recess support. However, if the organization meets all the other criteria and devotes only a portion of its programming to recess support, please contact a program officer to discuss before considering an application.
I run my neighborhood’s chapter of a citywide or national soccer, baseball, or other sports league. May it apply for a grant?
No. While PCT appreciates all that you do on behalf of youth, it does not have the resources to support multiple chapters of larger organizations. In addition, grants focus on locally based SBYD organizations that exist primarily to serve disadvantaged youth.
Will you sponsor our tournament?
No. PCT supports organizations that offer continuity over time, not one-time events.
Our organization’s staff has read the guidelines and FAQs and believe the organization is a fit. How much should it request?
Typically, SBYD grants range from $10,000 – $30,000.

Selected grantsEnding Youth Homelessness

Ending Youth Homelessness is a strategic priority of The City of Chicago’s plan to end homelessness, Chicago’s Plan 2.0. Its stated goal is to “create a comprehensive, developmentally appropriate menu of services for youth who experience homelessness in order to prevent homeless youth from becoming the next generation of homeless adults.” In support of this important goal, and in keeping with its commitment to serving the most vulnerable individuals in Chicago, Prince Charitable Trusts is focusing its emergency services work on ending youth homelessness.

Funding will support:

  • Organizations that provide shelter to homeless youth as well as services that prepare them to live independently
  • Organizations that provide direct assistance to youth experiencing homelessness to help them meet needs such as staying in school, accessing health services, and finding and keeping jobs.