Mission, vision and strategic investments.

Our Mission

The mission of Youthprise is to champion learning beyond the classroom so that all Minnesota youth thrive.

Youthprise was founded by the McKnight Foundation in 2010 to increase the quality, accessibility, sustainability and innovation of opportunities for learning beyond the classroom. We strategically combine funding, capacity building, policy advocacy, research, and modeling youth engagement under one roof. This unique combination creates efficiencies, accelerates implementation, and maximizes impact. Youthprise invests directly in and seeks to align efforts across city, regional, and state systems that impact youth. Youthprise has the flexibility to leverage additional resources and to innovate by testing and investing in new approaches. We elevate youth voice in decision making about programs, policies, research, systems and philanthropy.

As an intermediary, we act as an incubator, connector and relationship broker, forging connections between community-based organizations, schools, funders, public agencies, youth and adults. We convene stakeholders; provide training, coaching and technical assistance; and link organizations doing similar work. A central tenet of our work is a commitment to racial equity and working to address the disparities faced by youth of color and other disconnected youth.

Our Vision

Minnesota will lead the nation in accelerating leadership and innovation beyond the classroom, ensuring that:

  • Every young person is included and engaged.
  • Every family has access.
  • Every program has support to ensure quality and impact.
  • Every community has a clear plan—for youth and with youth.


Our Investors