Best Buy Ignites Teen Potential through Technology
For half a century, Best Buy has been a catalyst for the rise of technology as a means to improve virtually every aspect of our lives. As a company, we aim to help customers pursue their passions and enrich their lives through the use of technology. To support these efforts, the Best Buy Foundation provides underserved teens opportunities to develop technology skills that will inspire future education and career choices. As society becomes more reliant on technology, it is critical for youth to develop the necessary skills to be successful. Seventy-seven percent of the jobs that will be available in 10 years will require tech skills.
As experts in technology, our goal is to leverage our knowledge, resources and talented Best Buy and Geek Squad employees to empower underserved youth and help prepare them for the future.
Community Grant Overview
Best Buy Foundation will donate up to $2 million in Community Grants to local and regional nonprofit partners offering programs that create hands-on access to technology education and tools that teens will need to be successful in their future schooling and careers. Programs should include hands-on learning opportunities and engage the youth in experimenting, and interacting with the latest technologies to build 21st century skills. The overall goal is to provide underserved teens with access to new technologies and help them become interested and fluent in digital learning while developing skills to help better prepare them for future education and career success.
Programs should help teens build tech skills by utilizing cutting-edge technology such as computers, digital cameras, video cameras and professional software in a wide range of areas including (but not limited to):
- Audio production (including music mixing & recording)
- Coding/3D printing
- Computer maintenance and repair
- Digital photography/graphic design
- Filmmaking & videography
- Maker Faires/hack-a-thons
- Mobile & game app development
- Web site design
- 3D Printing
Community Grants are designed to support local efforts and are reviewed for consideration by Best Buy teams across the United States. The average grant amount is $5000 and will not exceed $10,000.
Best Buy is searching for local organizations with a demonstrated track record for building skill proficiency in technology through out-of-school time programs.
The primary responsibilities of the nonprofit organization include:
- Providing staff and curriculum for the out-of-school time programming. May include volunteer instructors.
- Where the opportunity exists, working with schools and other community-based organizations to build awareness of the program to drive teen participation.
- Demonstrating access to youth from underserved communities.
- Developing financial and community support to help sustain the program beyond the grant funding from Best Buy Foundation.
- Submitting a report on program components such as participant engagement, program activities, desired outcomes, challenges, successes, and participant survey results.
- Where possible, enabling participation of Best Buy employees to serve as volunteers.
Best Buy invites out-of-school time programs that have a fundamental commitment to youth, ages 13-18, to apply for funding. Minimum eligibility criteria include:
- Eligible nonprofits may be a public or nonprofit community-based organization (e.g., community center, school or library) with existing local or regional out-of-school time program and a proven track record of serving youth ages 13-18.
- Program located within a nonprofit organization targeting teens in underreousced communities.
- Program must operate within 25 miles of a Best Buy store or other Best Buy center of operations (e.g., warehouse, corporate headquarters, Geek Squad Service Center, etc.) to allow for Best Buy employee volunteer participation (if appropriate). To find store locations, visit bestbuy.com and click on “Store Locator”.
- Commitment to diversity and inclusion.
- Organizations that have engaged Best Buy employee volunteers will receive special consideration.
- Organizations within the Twin Cities seven-county metro area are eligible and can apply for Best Buy Foundation support through the Community Grants Program or Twin Cities Fund, but not both.
- Previous grantees must submit a report before applying for subsequent funding.
To determine eligibility, please complete the quiz at: www.cybergrants.com/bestbuy/CommunityGrantsquiz
Required Elements of the Proposal:
(Please include in online submission)
Proposals will be evaluated and competitively ranked by a local review committee from Best Buy. The review committee may contact you with additional questions as part of the selection process. The overall comprehensiveness, quality and clarity of the proposal will be taken into consideration.
Make sure to address each requirement below in the section that corresponds to the online application. The grant will be to support the operation of the program for one-year. Grant recipients will be eligible to apply the following year for funding, there are no guarantees of renewed funding. (Click here for a PDF version.)
- Statement of nonprofit organization’s mission and strategic direction.
Define Youth Served
- Describe how your organization reaches and supports young people. Include number of youth served, related demographic data (e.g., ages served, gender mix, ethnicity, % on free and reduced lunch program), hours of operation, and schedule of activities.
- Specifically, describe successful engagement with economically disadvantaged and diverse populations.
- Describe the geographic area served by your organization/program. Include details on the challenges, issues or needs within the community that the program addresses.
Program Goals, Objectives, & Impact
- Describe how a grant from Best Buy can help achieve your current and future objectives.
- Describe how a grant would support the development of youth – increasing 21st century technology skills and preparing for future education and careers.
- Describe experience with informal learning environments.
- Describe your experience with using technology as a learning tool for teens.
- Give examples of prior experience with program evaluation.
- Describe leadership opportunities for youth, as well as the role of youth in planning and implementing programs and activities.
- Include examples of any collaboration with organizations in the community.
- Outline any proposed or existing Best Buy employee volunteer activities.
- Describe your volunteerism program.
- Describe your reputation in the community and give examples of a demonstrated history of success.
- Outline, in a bulleted format, the specific metrics used to track program success in areas of developing 21st century skills and bridging the digital divide (e.g., types of skills and level of proficiency, amount of interest in digital learning, technology access provided to underserved youth).
- Provide a brief explanation of your program evaluation process.
Brief Narrative of Organization’s Budget
- List corporate funders, levels of support and any funding received from Best Buy previously.
Brief Narrative of Program’s Budget
- Include total program budget, identifying how funds from Best Buy would be used.
Other Funding Sources
- List of other funders of the program and levels of support, for which you’re requesting funds.
Proposal Deadline and Administrative Information
|Program grants (no general operating or product requests) Typically range from $4k to $6k, will not exceed $10k|
|Grant Period||Up to one year of funding|
|Eligibility Quiz Launch||April 1, 2017|
|Eligibility Quiz Link||www.cybergrants.com/bestbuy/CommunityGrantsquiz|
|Application Site Opens||Monday, May 1, 2017 8:00A.M. EDT|
|Proposal Due Date||Proposal must be submitted no later than
Friday, May 19, 2017 5:00P.M. EDT
|Notification Date||August 31, 2017|