Youth Conference Hosts Students from 27 Ozarks Schools

 Community Foundation of the Ozarks, in partnership with Drury University, hosted the 2009 Youth Philanthropy Conference of the Youth Empowerment Project. Nearly 200 students and sponsors from 27 southern Missouri schools attended the conference held at the Drury University Findlay Student Center.Drury President Todd Parnell gave the welcome and spoke on the importance of philanthropy. The keynote was given by Jennifer Moore, Senior News Producer at KSMU whose international experience as a journalist has given her a unique perspective and love for her Ozarks community. Dr. Gary Funk also spoke on youth-driven grant opportunities through the Community Foundation of the Ozarks’ Rural Schools Partnership. Additionally, students participated in small-group discussions about the importance of philanthropy in local communities and the purpose of a Youth Empowerment grantmaking project.The mission of the Youth Empowerment Project is to give youth the opportunity to positively impact their community. This is accomplished through education, service, grantmaking, and fundraising. Students involved in Youth Empowerment Project organizations raise funds through projects and events and then grant those funds to worthy youth-related causes in their community.  To learn more about creating a regional YEP, please contact Bridget Dierks.Pictured:  Students and Sponsors from the Monett Youth Empowerment Project