Young Leaders for Social Change


Democratic Philanthropy in Action

Young Leaders for Social Change
Fellowship Program

Nominations and Application Process Open

Deadline: June 15, 2023, at 5 pm EST

Southern Partners Fund (SPF) is a public foundation located in Atlanta, GA, created and governed by grassroots leaders from rural communities across 12 states in the Southeast. For more than 20 years, SPF has worked to increase the capacity of the grassroots movement by supporting community-based organizations in the rural South working for political empowerment, workers’ rights, environmental justice, and an end to all forms of systemic oppression.t

SPF is pleased to announce the 2023-24 Young Leaders for Social Change Fellowship

Young Leaders for Social Change (YLSC) was born out of the necessity to increase skillsets, advocacy, and civic participation amongst our youth. YSLC strives to give voice to young, rural-based, emerging community organizers, non-profit professionals, and philanthropic practitioners, aged 18-35, who are committed to social change in the Southeast. The fellowship is designed to provide financial and hands on support to ten young leaders from across the Southeast by building capacity, launching grassroot projects and/or cultivating innovative ways to connect with community or solve community issues


Believing in the power of and strategic need for committed and skilled organizers, SPF is pleased to support individuals working to dismantle systems of oppression. This year marks SPF’s third class of Young Leaders for Social Change Fellows!  The applications/nominations process is now open for individuals who share SPF’s vision who live and work in one of the 12 states in the Southeast.


The Young Leaders for Social Change Fellowship Program is designed to help individuals become grounded and more effective leaders in their communities. This program is an opportunity for individuals to enhance their leadership skills, to learn new skills, and to apply those/these skills in their communities.

Each selected Fellow will receive a $10,000 stipend, paid quarterly, in $2,500 disbursements to support their local community efforts.

Fellows will begin their one-year fellowship by attending a virtual welcome, orientation and community organizing for social change workshop on July 26th, 2023. Additional sessions will be provided and scheduled over the course of the fellowship. Throughout the year, fellows will be networked to each other through conference calls, provided other opportunities regionally and nationally to enhance their skills and to build relationships including:6

Fellows will be required to submit quarterly updates on their progress and challenges leading up to their final report and complete a final report and project.

The final project can result in:

Fellows will be supported by SPF staff and membership. An in-person gathering will be scheduled for FALL 2023.


Applicants must be living and working for social justice primarily in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. Applicants must be 18-35 years of age.

Applicants must be available for the first activities of the Fellowship July 26th, 2023

The Fellowship will NOT fund the following:


Applicants must submit a Statement of Interest and Intent with one-page nomination/reference letters from three (3) nominators. In your own way and your own words, please fill out the application below for the YLSC selection committee to review.

Applicant Contact Info

Applicant Profile

Please answer each question (excluding Question 7 if you are uploading a resume) in approximately 150 words or more.
Click or drag files to this area to upload. You can upload up to 3 files.
Click or drag files to this area to upload. You can upload up to 2 files.


Applications must be received in the SPF Office by June 15, 2023, at 5 pm EST.
Only complete applications will be considered. A complete application includes the following:

Applications will be received any one of the following ways:
Via the form above or by email to
or mail to
Attn: YLSC Fellowship
Southern Partners Fund
1 Baltimore Place NW, Suite 150
Atlanta, GA 30308


A small committee of representatives of SPF Board and Membership will select the ten fellows. Virtual interviews will be conducted with the finalists.

June 15, 2023
July 13, 2023
July 26, 2023
Monthly TBA
Details to come October 2023

Applications Due
Notification of Fellows
Welcome & Orientation
Training Sessions via Zoom
In Person Meeting