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YAPPERS Grantmaking Fund

At a Glance

  • Awarded $9,000+ in grants in 2022
  • Comprised of 15 students from Dubuque high schools
  • Students raise all of the dollars they grant

About Us

YAP-PER: 1. (n.) a youth board member of the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque; 2. (n.) part of a team of highly motivated teens dedicated to using volunteerism, philanthropy and grant making to act as positive youth role models, to develop leadership skills and to improve the quality of life for youth in the Dubuque community; 3. (n.) a student from a Dubuque high school. In their collective role as youth leaders, the YAPPERS direct their energy and passion into two main projects: 1) A full grantmaking cycle that mirrors that of the Community Foundation. Grants are awarded to local agencies with programs that focus on youth. 2) The Empty Bowls project: a youth poverty awareness and fundraising campaign. The project concludes with an annual Feed the Need luncheon and silent auction. All proceeds benefit local youth in poverty.


The YAPPERS meet to engage in teambuilding and leadership activities, to discuss local youth issues, to plan events and service projects, and to make funding decisions to support youth-serving organizations.

Basic Information




700 Locust St, Ste 195 Dubuque, Iowa 52001


Emily Rollins

Director Email

Success Story

Elena Dietz, 17, has lived in Dubuque her entire
 life but during the past year, her work with the
 YAPPERS—Youth Area Philanthropists—has 
opened her eyes to new aspects of her hometown.
 “I’ve met people from different walks of life and
 seen parts of Dubuque that I’d never seen before, ”
she says. From painting the Riverview Center to
 helping with the Multicultural Family Center’s Taste
 of the World celebration, Elena says her experience
 with the YAPPERS has also improved her people 
skills. “You can’t just sit in the corner when people
 need your help.” The Community Foundation created the YAPPERS 
in 2004. Comprised of local junior and senior 
high school students, the program provides 
opportunities for youth to become involved in their 
community, to grow as individuals, and to get 
started early on the path to philanthropy.
 In 2006, the YAPPERS received the Association
 of Fundraising Professionals’ Outstanding Youth
 in Philanthropy award. Since then, the group 
has supported numerous community-wide 
service projects and volunteered for an array of 
organizations. The YAPPERS’ signature event is 
Feed the Need, an annual soup-line-style luncheon
 and silent auction that aims to raise awareness
 of youth hunger. The successful event has raised 
thousands of dollars to support YAPPERS grants for 
youth-serving nonprofits. Elena is starting her senior year at Dubuque Senior 
High School this fall and plans to continue her 
involvement with the YAPPERS. “Seeing what we’ve 
been able to do for others, I wouldn’t feel right if I 
didn’t continue to give back to my community.”

Fund Details

Fund Name

YAPPERS Grantmaking Fund

Year Founded


Support This Fund

YAPPERS Grantmaking Fund