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30 Year-Old Daniel Kaufman of Sacramento, CAand Four Others Receive $25,000 in Funding at National Youth Summit Focused on Economic Challenges Facing Young Americans
Mobilize.org and the Peter G. Peterson Foundation (PGPF) today announced the results of their National Youth Summit, entitled Democracy 2.0: Exploring the Millennial Generation's ROI, which brought one hundred fifty young people from around the country to Chicago, Illinois last week to discuss challenges facing young people, particularly given the economic downturn, and to give them the opportunity to present innovative solutions to the unique issues facing their generation.
The event culminated in a grant proposal competition in which seventeen grant proposals were presented to a panel of judges comprised of Maya McGuinness, Director of Fiscal Policy Programs for the New America Foundation, Neel Hajra, CEO of Nonprofit Enterprise at Work, and Michael Peterson, Vice-Chairman of PGPF. The final word on the grants awards, to be awarded by Mobilize.org, was decided by the vote of the Summit participants, using keypad technology.
Summit Grant Competition
In advance of the Summit, Mobilize.org invited members of the Millennial generation (individuals between the ages of 18 and 34) to submit grant proposals for solutions that would improve the economic health of America’s younger generations.
Mobilize.org reviewed submissions from across the country and selected seventeen finalists. Those finalists presented their proposal ideas to a panel of non-voting expert judges and advisors and then pitched fellow participants on the final day of the Summit. Using interactive key-pad voting technology, Summit participants chose five winners, who will be receiving funding from Mobilize.org to support their projects.
Funded ideas will become 12-month projects of Mobilize.org.
The final winners are:
1st Place: One Percent Foundation, Daniel Kaufman, 30, (Sacramento, CA)
Calls on young Americans to make a collective impact by make recurring donations of 1% of their annual income through a single funding entity.
2nd Place: Gaming for Our Future, Eric Heis, 27,(Washington, DC) and Nicola Moore, 27, (Washington, DC)
Interactive web-based game to raise fiscal awareness, utilizes social networking and multiplayer components.
3rd Place: Wealth Watchers International, Edward Sandrick, 25, (Naperville, Illinois)
Enables users to enter and manage daily spending into an electronic budget journal on their PDA or smartphone.
4th Place: You Are Your Business, Alicia Holmes-Busby, 32, (Dallas, TX)
Establishes a two semester financial literacy program for older teens that focuses on the "business of self" by utilizing a peer educator program.
5th Place: MyImpact.org, Chris Golden, 20, (Coventry, CT) and Nick Troiano, 20, (Milford, PA)
Utilizes a "volun-tweet" application, which measures impact of Millennial volunteerism on Twitter and encourages volunteering through social networking.
** Additional information about the winning proposals will be posted on www.mobilize.org. **
Voting on Solutions
Over the three-day Summit, participants engaged in peer-led group discussions about barriers to achieving financial health, and brainstormed actions necessary to begin setting an agenda for Millennial-led economic reform in the United States.
Summit discussions focused on four key issue areas: (1) entitlements, (2) personal financial responsibility & literacy, (3) healthcare, and (4) taxes. For each of these issue areas, Summit participants divided into small groups and discussed what key actions could and should be taken by the federal government, non-profits and young Americans, respectively, to address growing challenges in each of these issue areas.
Proposed actions and solutions developed in the small discussion groups were presented to all Summit participants and were put to a vote, based on the merit and feasibility of the recommendation.
** Full voting results will be posted on www.mobilize.org. **
Economic Challenges Facing the Millennial Generation
The Millennial generation faces giant hurdles in putting its economic future on a sustainable path. Currently, 30% of young Americans born between 1976 and 1996 are uninsured — more than any other generation. Additionally, these young Americans experience the highest rate of unemployment and more debt than any other age group. The average Millennial is burdened with $27,000 in student loan debt after college, and $2000 in credit card debt that doubles by age 35.
PGPF and Mobilize.org recognize that young Americans must take a greater role in protecting their economic futures, and are providing the tools, resources, and forum necessary to enable today’s Millennial leaders to work collaboratively to execute solutions to a variety of economic issues.
Mobilize.org is an all-partisan network dedicated to educating, empowering, and energizing young people to increase our civic engagement and political participation. For more information, visit www.mobilize.org.
About the Peter G. Peterson Foundation
PGPF is dedicated to increasing public awareness of the nature and urgency of key economic challenges threatening America's future and to accelerating action on them. To address these challenges successfully, we work to bring Americans together to find sensible, long-term solutions that transcend age, party lines and ideological divides in order to achieve real results. For more information, see www.PGPF.org.