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 Weston Youth Services Youth Mini Grant FAQ's

  • Where do I find the application?  Find the application HERE.  Also if you ask, we can email it to you directly. 
  • What is the deadline for submitting the application?  This is a rolling application process. You can submit an application anytime you have a great idea and fully completed application.  The projects do need to happen during the 2019-2020 school year.
  • Who is Weston Youth Services?  Weston Youth Services is a department of the Town of Weston and part of a larger web of youth services bureaus in towns all over CT., dedicated to the well-being of  CT youth and families.
  • Who makes the decisions about awarding the mini grants?  Weston Youth services together with its volunteer advisory committee, the Weston Youth Commission.
  • What's the next step after I submit my application? We'll let you know via email that we receieved your application, and give you an answer in 4-6 weeks. If you have a hard deadline (such as an event date),  tell us and we'll speed it up!
  • Does everyone who applies receive a mini grant?  No. We consider every application carefully.  Your chances of receiving a mini grant depend on a few things: 1) Did you complete the application?  2). Is your project a good fit with the WYS mission? 3) How many application do we receive? A lot of applications = more competition.  4) Our budget
  • What's the next step if I am awarded the youth mini grant? We'll let you know next steps at the same time that we approve you grant.  
  • If you say no to my grant applicaton, can I re-sumbit in the future? Maybe.  If we do not award you a mini grant,  we'll offer specific reasons and  feedback. That feedback may include an offer to re-submit with changes.
  • Who do you give the actual grant check to? We pay the adult advisor, student group, or supporting organization. We can not give checks directly to students. Details will be in the award email and worked out on a case-by-case basis.
  • Can I submit more than one application for a mini-grant during the school year? Generally, No. But if you think that your idea is amazing, come talk to us about it (before you take the time to fill our the application). We're not being stingy- we just  want to spread this opportunity around.
  • Can I sumbit a grant application this year and again next year? Maybe. This is a new program and if it goes well, we hope to offer it again next year.  If we do, then yes, you can submit a new grant application in a new school year.
  • I have a great idea but I am not connected to any group or organization; can I submit an application?  Maybe. This is a tough one for us, as we want to encourage ideas from everyone and we know not everyone is part of a group. Being  connected to a group or organization helps with  accountability  and ease of payment. BUT if you have a great idea and are not connected to a group, we will consider your application IF you have an adult supporter willing to fill out a W9, take payment and take responsibility for overseeing expenditures. It will be a case-by-case decision.
  • Help! Who can I talk to if I'm having trouble with the application or have questions?  Contact Weston Youth Services Director, Laura Cleary: Lcleary@westonct.gov  (203) 222-2585. You can also check in with our Weston Youth Commission youth members,WHS students:  Bridget Angus &  Knox Watson.
  • Does my project have to happen in Weston? No. But, it does have to benefit Weston youth and families.  If you do something outside of Weston- to benefit a cause or group of people, you have to tell us how this benefits Weston youth and families. For example, if your project involves 20 Weston youth doing something good for the greater world then that is good for the Weston youth involved in the efforts. The youth involved do need to be Weston residents.
  • I'm in 5th grade and I have a great idea to help Weston youth.  Can I apply for a mini grant?  Nope.  This first year of the mini grant program we are strictly limiting the eligibility to 6-12 grade students.  BUT do contact us  to tajl about the problem you want to solve and  your ideas, because Weston Youth Services can support youth in other ways. 
  • I need more than $500 for my idea; Can you offer more money for a great project?  No. Sorry about that but we are a small youth services with a limited budget. BUT  we would consider funding part of a project if you can find funding from somewhere else for the remainder.  We would be happy to chat with you about this.
  • I need less that $500 for my idea; Can I still apply?  Yes!!  The WYS mini grant is for UP TO $500. Asking for less- $150, $200, $400- is fine.  Use the budget part of the application to show us what your costs will be.
  • What kind of records do I need to keep on my project? If we award you the grant funding, we will send you specific information about record keeping and a final report. It's not too tough but we do want to see that you spent the money in the way that you said you would and we do want to hear about the implementation. Photos are nice if appropriate!
  • What if I  receive the grant, implement my project and it seems like a failure? This is a great question.  Good ideas do not always work out as intended.  This sounds corny but here it is:  100% absolutely failures are opportunities to learn.  If it doesn't work out, your final report can include what may have gone wrong. We'll learn and you'll learn.
  • What if I don't use all of my grant funds for some reason? If your budget changes or something unexpected happens and you have funds leftover from your grant money, talk to us about it. We may be able to brainstorm a way for you to use that money to enhance your project or we may ask you to return the remaining funds so that we can pass them along to another mini grant applicant. 
  • What is the final report I need to submit if I am awarded a mini grant?  We'll tell you about the final report in our award email.  It will include: Records of money spent in line with your application budget,  a narrative report about the project, and photos or other supporting stuff if you have it. Again, details will come if you're awarded the grant.