Capacity Building

YouthBridge has developed this grant program to assist nonprofits in building, strengthening and sustaining their organizations.


Agencies will be able to submit applications for capacity building efforts of their own choice. Examples include risk assessment, fund development, strategic planning, IT training, executive leadership training, and Diversity and Inclusion trainings. Funds may also be used to support needed infrastructure such as case management systems or other operational systems necessary to support agency stability. Agency must be able to provide some match in funding. Grant sizes will vary depending on grant purpose and application request. YouthBridge will match up to 75% of project cost; maximum grant amount is $7500.


  • The applicant is incorporated as an IRC 501(c)(3) public charity.
  • The applicant has a mission that is primarily focused on children or youth.
  • The applicant is in and primarily serves the St. Louis metropolitan area.
  • Current Heritage Grant Awardees are not eligible.

Past Recipients

In 2022, we funded the following proposals:

Springboard to Learning

Build the organization’s capacity by funding a strategic plan to identify programmatic, fundraising and administrative goals with action steps for achieving each goal. It will also identify current trends and the opportunities and threats related to those trends. The end result will position Springboard for increased strength to deliver programs to under-resourced students, making certain that the product delivered adequately meets the needs of those served. $7,500


Funds will support Homeworks board and staff working with Let’s Build Hope, a St. Louis based nonprofit consultancy, for a one-year Capacity Building and Training program. The program consists of:  Development of a case for funding, Developing a plan and implementation for board development, Creation of an Annual Fund Development strategy, One full-year of mentoring, Evaluating database capacity and creating needed reports. $7,500

Megan Meier Foundation

Funds will provide support for a project to revamp and reinvigorate the Board of Directors.  The agency will have a consultant provide board training and assist the agency in establishing clearly defined processes for recruitment, orientation, officers, term limits, and develop a board manual.  $7,500


Funds will offset the cost of an external consultant conducted comprehensive study/fit test to determine the long-term sustainability of an Emergency Shelter as part of a vacant hospital campus into a community center. Caritas has partnered with AltonWorks a philanthropic development company on the concept of an innovative model of community-based social services operated by Caritas at the vacant facility in Alton, IL. $7,500

The Child Advocacy Center

Funds will support interactive security and compliance training with real-life simulated scenarios to help teach staff how to respond in a challenging situation. The content addresses difficult and sometimes chaotic topics like phishing, malware, cyber security, sexual harassment, diversity and inclusion, discrimination, and business ethics. Also included is a 36-month subscription to KnowB4 Security Awareness Training and Compliance Plus for staff continued education and compliance. $3,200

Child Care Aware Missouri

Funds will be used to support the organizations work with a consultant to increase their messaging and marketing techniques to expand their fundraising opportunities on their website and in their printed materials. $7,500

Saint Louis Story Stitchers Artists Collective

Funds will support The Saint Louis Story Stitchers Artists Collective board and staff working with Let’s Build Hope, a St. Louis based nonprofit consultancy, for one-year to develop an Annual Fund Development Plan. The plan will consists of: Development of a case for funding, create an annual development strategy with an annual development calendar, create an executive summary, development of a direct appeal and other strategies to increase donor awareness, cultivation and stewardship. In addition, team members will attend Let’s Build Hope’s annual fund development training camp. $7,500

East Side Aligned

Funds for East Side Aligned will be used in the development of a multi-year strategic plan that will guide their newly established and multi-faceted organization’s decision-making, scope of programs and services, resource allocation, staffing structure, fund development, and evaluation activities. $7,500

St. Louis Youth Jobs

Funds will assist St. Louis Youth Jobs to achieve their goal of revenue growth and fund diversification to create a path to sustainable growth.  To accomplish this, they have hired Let’s Build Hope, a fundraising consulting team that is focused on assisting them to create annual fund development strategies that include increasing individual, mid-level, major gifts and corporate support initiatives through cultivation, solicitation, an annual appeal and moves processes as well as board coaching on their fundraising contribution and involvement and the planning of donor stewardship events. $7,500

Vision for Children at Risk

Funds will support Vision for Children at Risks’ work with a Human Resource Firm. The Firm will support their leadership team and staff with ongoing training and coaching sessions, updated policies and procedures, and ensure compliance with federal guidelines. The Firm will also help enhance the onboarding process, and the ongoing training and professional development of all staff. $3,686

Wyman Center

Funds will support Wyman Center with the implementation of their new Youth Leadership Council. The Youth Leadership Council is a diverse collective of young people focused on sharing ideas, creating solutions, and putting those solutions into action with the support of Wyman. Youth Leadership council members will influence and advise Wyman’s direct advocacy actions, partnerships, and identified mission-aligned priority issue areas as part of Wyman’s Advocacy Framework. By creating a space for youth to authentically partner with Wyman’s staff and board of trustees, they will add to the organization’s capacity by being able to effectively include the voices, perspectives, ideas, and capacity of the youth leaders. Their work will help to expand and improve Wyman’s programmatic offerings and work overall. $7,500

In 2021, we funded the following programs:

Recovery and Resilience: Risk Assessment

Each agency received $5,000 to participate in a cohort facilitated by Risk Alternatives. This cohort guided each agency in establishing a Risk Assessment for their agency.

  • Provident, Inc.
  • St. Louis Diaper Bank
  • St. Louis Sports Foundation

Recovery and Resilience: Fundraising Capacity

Each agency received $2,500 to participate in a one-week fundraising training camp conducted by Let’s Build Hope. Agencies received education on fundraising techniques.

  • The Child Advocacy Center
  • The Sparrow’s Nest
  • St. Louis Diaper Bank
  • Megan Meier Foundation
  • Lutheran Elementary School Association
  • Hope Creates
  • Guardian Angel Settlement Association
  • Good Shepard School for Children
  • United 4 Children
  • ALIVE, Inc
  • St. Louis Sports Foundation