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The Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa's Teen Trust program began in 1994 and is a model for youth philanthropy. A diverse group of students from area high schools has $15,000 to grant to nonprofit organizations serving Black Hawk County. Using a grant application system, site visits, and training seminars, the Trustees work as a team to decide which organizations to assist through financial aid and volunteerism. Read reflections from former Trustees.

Apply to become a trustee

The application to join Teen Trust for the 2024-2025 season is now open. Any incoming sophomore, junior, or senior who attends high school in Black Hawk County is eligible to apply to participate in the Teen Trust program. 

Click Here to Apply

Teen Trust Members 2023-2024

2023-2024 Trustees


Teen Trust was created with a vision in mind -- to prepare youth to be "trustees of their community." At the heart of becoming a trustee means finding a way for youth to learn about and also actively practice philanthropy. To that end, the mission by which the Teen Trust program operates is: To provide youth an opportunity to develop philanthropic behaviors, leadership and stewardship skills, and volunteer experiences.

Learn about Teen Trust grants

Project Goals

  • Nurture a cohesive, enthusiastic network of youth who are inspired to share their gifts of service with others.
  • Provide a learning environment in which youth are primarily responsible for the allocation of funds to support projects addressing community issues.
  • Promote innovative, practical solutions to community problems through youth as project developers.
  • Entrust youth with legitimate authority to decide and direct the future of their community.
  • Engage youth immediately as community trustees, acknowledging that they are currently active citizens, not just leaders of the future.


  • Over $260,000 in grants to support local charitable projects since Teen Trust's inception.
  • Roughly 600 local students trained in philanthropy and trusteeship.
  • National recognition by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation as one of the most important grants they've made in their 75-year history (
  • Countless lives changed.