September 29, 2019

On October 1st, 2019 the Ann Arbor Jaycees will begin accepting applications for the inaugural Community Building Initiative to fund innovative ideas to connect and improve the lives of young adults living and working in Washtenaw County. The initiative will empower leaders in our community with the skills and financial backing they need to turn their idea into a reality. This is a first of its kind initiative in the area to specifically ask young adults to step up and propose solutions to improve living and working conditions within the region.  Of particular interest are projects that address social and labor injustices, social connectedness of young adults, professional networking and skill building.  However all ideas will be considered.  

Proposals for the new Community Building Initiative will be accepted from October 1st through November 15th, 2019. Details and the application form form can be found on the Ann Arbor Jaycees website for this project Carena Townsend, President of the Ann Arbor Jaycees, said of the project, “We look forward to connecting with community members directly through this initiative and helping them to develop projects they feel passionately about that will have an immediate impact on the lives of young people throughout the county.” All submissions will be evaluated by a committee of current Ann Arbor Jaycees, and will be awarded funds based on the amount requested, ranging from $1,000 to $10,000. The Ann Arbor Jaycees will work closely with winning groups to assist with planning, financial accounting, and other supportive tasks to ensure your team has the resources it needs to reach your goal.

The Ann Arbor Jaycees will be hosting an open Q&A and discussion about the Community Building Initiative at 6pm on October 15th, at Go! Ice Cream (10/15/19 updated location) in Ypsilanti.  If you’re looking for help writing your submission, or have questions about possible funding ideas, or want to be paired with others in the community to make your pitch stronger please stop by the discussion event!  

After submissions close on November 15 the Ann Arbor Jaycees may reach out to your group with questions and then select a subset of applicants to attend a pitch event on December 5, 2019.  Final selections will be made on December 9, 2019.  Projects are expected to be carried out sometime in 2020.   Questions about the Community Building Initiative should be emailed to  

The Ann Arbor Jaycees are young adults ages 21 to 40 who want to make a positive difference in our community.  Our organization is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit and has served the Ann Arbor area since 1936.   We're also affiliated with JCI Michigan, the U.S. Jaycees, and Junior Chamber International.