The Calgary Youth Foundation (CYF) began in 1994 as the first program of its kind in Canada with a purpose to turn dreams into reality. Involving youth in a hands-on approach to philanthropy, the Calgary Youth Foundation provides youth with an opportunity to create positive change in their community by allocating grants to community projects, preparing a presentation and pitching to potential funders. 


A committee of 8-12 youth aged 12-18 meets twice a month to organize and prepare for two granting cycles (Spring and Fall) in which they allocate funds to deserving projects around Calgary. The committee reviews all applicants, select the recipients and distribute the funds as a team. In addition, the committee organizes fundraising initiatives that contribute to Youth Central’s endowment fund at the Calgary Foundation. Applications for the youth members of the CYF Steering Committee are available in August/September and are selected in October of each year. We have completed recruiting for the 2022-2023 program year. 


For more information, please contact the Program Coordinator at


Grant Cycle Applications Due April 17, 2023 @ 11:59 pm. Please note that any applications submitted between now and then will not be reviewed until April 2023. We do not provide funds to projects that have occurred prior to our deadline.  

– The CYF funds projects that have a direct impact on youth in Calgary and the surrounding area.

– The CYF gives priority to youth initiated, youth driven projects.  Youth are defined as elementary, junior and senior high age. Adult support is welcome.

– The CYF does not fund for-profit ventures.

– The CYF does not fund projects that will pass on our funds to others

– The CYF does not cover conference fees, tuition costs, etc. for individuals or groups. 

– The CYF does not fund individuals directly in the form of salary, fees etc..

– The CYF does not fund non-inclusive activities. 


In partnership with the Mayor’s Youth Council, the Calgary Youth Foundation facilitates the Jack Leslie Youth Environment Grant. Two school groups are eligible for $1,000 each, and individuals are eligible for $500 each, for a project that will benefit the environment in Calgary. The Jack Leslie Youth Environment Grant is a creative partnership between Youth Central, the Leslie family, the City of Calgary and the Parks Foundation. The grant recognizes the positive impact Jack Leslie, former Mayor of Calgary, made to the city and the environment and encourages youth in Calgary to continue with his efforts.

Congratulations to the 2022 Jack Leslie Youth Environment Grant Recipients

Briar Hill Rain Garden

The student’s project is to create a rain garden that will help protect the Bow River watershed. The garden would collect rainwater or snow melt from impermeable surfaces such as the school roof and allow it to infiltrate into the soil rather than ending up in our storm water system. Another goal of this project is to develop the environmental stewardship of the students; teaching them that we need to protect our source water and exposing them to alternative ways to lessen climate change. Additionally, the students will see first-hand the interconnectedness of all life and hopefully see the importance of protecting our water from pollution, drought, and waste.

The Infinity Garden

The John G. Diefenbaker (JGD) high school environmental club, (the Green Chiefs), together with Sir John A Macdonald (SJAM) Junior High, are working with on a collective project called the Infinity Garden. Initial construction of the garden is complete and the second phase, involving planting of up to 12 trees, various bushes, and plants important to First Nations culture, as well as adding some seating stones to the garden space, is just starting.

The goal of this garden is to provide a space where we can teach youth in our community about the importance of conservation while simultaneously providing a historical link through Indigenous teachings. The garden will be a living acknowledgment of the land, providing a space for meaningful engagement in First Nations teachings and culture, providing a venue for community activities such as concerts, meetings with local elders, drum ceremonies, and more. Watch the video of the Infinity Garden project. 

Calgary French and International School (CFIS) Environmental Resilience Strategy – Phase I

The Calgary French and International School (CFIS) Environmental Resilience Strategy is a project, led by a grade 8 student, is aimed at achieving sustainability and a green school campus. There are multiple goals linked with the project including rain barrels, among others. An end goal for this project would be green energy conversion for the school campus or even carbon-neutral goals. This is a continuous project that will be developed over the year.