Who’s eligible to apply?

ISue-baker-chair-225x300Portland Public School students who are in 3rd grade –12th grade are eligible to apply. The grant is to be the idea of students and written by sudents. We welcome the assistance and mentoring of adults but this is a STUDENT grant. It is for students who want to make a difference in the community.

K-2 teachers may apply with additional supporting materials from students. These materials may include videos, writing, art, etc that demonstrates that students understand the difference that they are trying to make…that what they are doing matters. We want to know that they are invested in and excited about the project.

How much money is available?

You may apply for up to $500 for a project.

How can you apply?

Just complete a Youth-Led Service Learning Grant Application. There is only one grant award per project. Grant requests are reviewed as they are received. . We hope to have decisions made within 2-3 weeks after receipt of the application.

Who can I contact if I need help or have a question?

Contact the Community Coordinator in your school if you need assistance with this grant or contact Tina Edwards at

What do I do to get started?

The Process:

What: Youth identify and research a need/problem in the community.
How: Research could come from a variety of sources, such as—

  • Internet research, newspapers, or other materials
  • Observing a community need
  • Visiting a community agency
  • Talking to city officials
  • Getting an idea from a school class
  • Surveys or interviews

Researching your community problem is important so you are certain that you really understand the issue. After researching, it’s time to come up with a plan to address the need or contribute to solving the problem. (This process is based on the KIDS model of service learning that’s been used in Portland.)

Adult Allies

For every grant, PFP requires an adult ally to partner with students. The adult ally can offer guidance and support to students if they need some help.  However…the proposal must originate from young people and be written by them.  Grant funds will be sent to the school or agency…not to individuals.

Final Report and Documentation

You’ll be required to fill out a final reflection/evaluation form. You’ll also be asked to document your project in some way so that we can showcase your project and demonstrate what PFP grants are doing in the community!

Keep Reading!!!  There is still more to come!


All PAINTING FOR A PURPOSE projects are youth-led service learning projects. These projects have three aspects: community impact, youth ownership, and learning. You can think of service learning like a stool with three legs. If you take away any leg, it won’t be as strong.

In your grant application, we want you to pay attention to:

  • Community Impact: Your project addresses a community need.
  • Youth Ownership: Young people play a key role in implementing the project.
  • Learning: You are learning new things as you do this project.

We want to make it easier for youth to make a difference in their community. We look forward to your grant proposal and hearing about how you want to make a difference!!