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Community Engagement Programming

Saint Louis University's Center for Social Action offers numerous signature programs throughout the year for students, faculty and staff to become more meaningfully involved in the community.

1818 Community Engagement Grant Program

What impact could your group have on the community with $1,800? The 1818 Community Engagement Grant Program celebrates the over 200 year history of SLU giving back to the St. Louis community.  Eighteen grants of $1,800 each are given to selected applicants to make a positive impact in the community in partnership with a local non-profit organization. The 1818 Community Engagement Grant Program is sponsored by Lux Living of St. Louis.

2021-2022 Winners Announced

Click below to see the list of this year's selected projects.  All projects will be presenting on their impact at the 1818 Community Engagement Grant Showcase, Wednesday May 4 at 4:00 p.m. in the Center for Global Citizenship.

2021-2022 Selected Projects

Requirements

  • Groups must complete an application and submit a project budget and timeline.
  • All groups must have at least one community partner as a co-applicant and must include SLU students as part of the initiative.
  • Grants must either be used to start a new community engagement program or significantly improve an existing one.
  • All projects must be completed no later than May 31, 2022. All funds must be used by that date.
  • All recipients will present a poster on their project at the 1818 Community Engagement Grant Showcase on May 4, 2022. 

Download an Info Sheet (PDF)

Click the links below to see the impact that previous years' grants have had.

2020-2021 Impact Presentation

2019-2020 Impact Report

2018-2019 Impact Report

Is the grant open to faculty and staff, or just students?

The grant program welcomes applications from students, as well as faculty and staff. For groups of faculty or staff, it is highly recommended that students be involved in some way with the project.

Is the grant open to organizations or groups outside of Saint Louis University?

While the grant lead must be a SLU student, faculty or staff member, it is a requirement that a non-profit organization also be a partner on the grant.

Our group already has a community engagement program. Can we apply for funds to put towards our already-existing initiative?

Yes, as long as it can demonstrably show a significant potential improvement in your group’s community engagement program.

What if our group doesn’t spend all of its money? Can the funds be used in the future?

No, all funds must be spent by May 31, 2022. Unused funds will be returned to the main 1818 Community Engagement Grant program, and will be distributed the following year.

Does the project need to be ongoing in nature, or can we apply for a one-time day of service?

While we encourage groups to think long-term about their potential projects, groups can certainly apply for funding to create a one-time or short-term program.

If we receive a grant for this year, but want to continue the program beyond, can we receive additional funding?

Yes! In fact, groups who receive funds this year will be encouraged to apply again for future cycles to build on their first year, and will be given preference if a high degree of impact can be demonstrated in year one.

Can we donate the money we receive from the grant directly to our partner community organization?

All funds must be spent on materials, services, etc. No funds can go directly to the community organization.

My group is having trouble coming up with a grant proposal. Can you give some examples of potential community engagement programs?

Groups are encouraged to think about the community organization or issue that they want to impact, then approach them to collaboratively come up with an idea for a grant proposal.

Potential programs could include:

  • Building a playground at a local school or community center
  •  Implementing an after-school or weekend STEM program for youth
  • Hosting a winter or spring break service/immersion trip
  • Partnering with a local organization to host a health fair
  •  Creating a sustainable hunger reduction program
  • Organizing an advocacy campaign related to a particular social justice issue or congressional bill

The Center for Service and Community Engagement staff is also available to consult on a variety of ideas and potential community partners.

Service Fairs

An easy way to learn about all the ways you can make a difference in the community both as a student and as an alum is to attend our Community Service and Year of Service Fairs. You will be able to meet staff from dozens of groups to learn about their work and how to get involved.

Community Service Fair

Held each fall, this event brings non-profit organizations from across the region to campus to advertise service opportunities to our students.  Stay tuned for student registration information.

Year of Service Fair

Held in the fall semester, representatives from 25 organizations that offer post-graduate service opportunities will be on campus to advertise their programs.  SLU juniors and seniors are especially invited to explore the possibility of doing one or two years of service after graduation, whether here in St. Louis, around the country or across the world. Each year, nearly 75 members of the graduating class go on to participate in at least one year of service.

Participating Service Organizations

Jesuit Volunteer Corps

Volunteer for one to two years, either domestically or internationally. Live in community with other JVC volunteers. Room, board, health insurance and a monthly stipend are provided.

Jesuit Volunteer Corps Northwest

Similar to Jesuit Volunteer Corps, this program takes places specifically in the northwest region of the country, including Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Montana and Idaho, with both rural and urban experiences offered.

Americorps

Volunteer for one year domestically. Live individually and receive a modest living allowance, as well as education award. 

Peace Corps

Volunteer for two years internationally. Room, board, health insurance and a monthly stipend are provided. 

Teach for America

Volunteer to teach in a high-need public school for two years. Salary and health insurance are provided, as well as an education award upon completion of service.

Alum Service Corps

Sponsored by the Jesuits of the Missouri Province, Alum Service Corps volunteers commit a year of service teaching in a Jesuit middle or high school in Denver, Kansas City or St. Louis. The program offers retreats, housing, health insurance, a stipend, a community car and close ties to the school's Jesuit community.

For information on these or other programs, contact Bobby Wassel at 314-977-2041.

SLU students gardening

Every year, members of the SLU community participate in service projects throughout the region.