Education Fund

Are you getting involved in a big and exciting conference? You need a travel subsidy? You want to organize an awareness raising event in your community? SYC can help you with your individual fundraising efforts.

The SYC Education Fund aims to support individual learning pursuits. Currently we are not able to offer any direct funding, but instead we act as a resource to support fundraising from other sources. We offer an online fundraising tool (credit card accessible) as well as charitable receipts to those who donate to your project. Its simplicity and the tax incentive will help you raise more money than you had expected.

Do you fit the bill?

  • Applicant must be between the ages of 14 and 30 and/or a student.
  • Program must be educational and focused directly on environmental and/or social sustainability.
  • Applicant must be a member of the Sierra Youth Coalition ($25 per year).

How do I get started?

Send a request to participate in the fund to Explain in a few words what the project is all about. If your proposal is accepted, you will sign into a contract with us, and people will fund your project by donating via a secured web site. (Please do not solicit for donations prior to project approval to avoid misdirecting funds. Keep in mind that your proposal has to be approved by the Sierra Club of Canada Foundation and may take several weeks to be processed, so apply early!)

When you have accumulated all the funds you expect, simply send us an email asking for a disbursement and the money will be issued by cheque to you. We will issue the first 75% immediately and the second 25% once we get your report. Added bonus: SYC will use its website (and in some cases its listserve of a thousand people) to publicize your project.

What are the rules?

Not too much—don't worry! We just want to help you make the most out of your experience. So here's the deal:

  • Sign the contract, which explains the rules in more details.
  • You will be asked to submit a report to Sierra Club of Canada Foundation and Sierra Youth Coalition detailing your experience and knowledge gained. We ask that you also provide any multimedia (photos, videos etc.) that capture your experience.
  • Sierra Club of Canada Foundation will charge a 10% fee on all funds raised, of which 5% will cover administrative costs and the other 5% will be retained in the fund to be used as seed money to grow the fund.

Who has done this before?

The pilot project was Zoe Caron's trip to Antarctica with Students on Ice. When Zoe returned, she organized slide-show presentations about her experience to raise awareness about global warming and its visible impacts at the poles. Dan Hammond and Lauren Sutherland also used the Education Fund to help raise money towards their Students On Ice expedition. Eily Sweeney organized the Ride The Wave Project with the help of the SYC Education Fund.

How it works?

Sierra Youth Coalition, as an agent of Sierra Club of Canada Foundation, is able to work with the Foundation on charitable fundraising projects. The Foundation has agreed to manage the SYC Sustainability Education fund, which means that it can receive charitable donations and issue tax receipts in return for donations designated to the fund. Charitable gifts can be eligible for a federal tax credit of up to 29% (for gifts over $200), which means that a $200 donation could actually cost the donor as little as $142 and may be eligible for further provincial tax credits depending on the donors province of residence. Donors can give via credit card online using a provided link or they can mail a cheque made out to Sierra Club of Canada Foundation.

All donations need to be identified as being designated to the SYC Education Fund with the name of the individual project being supported. This can be done on the memo line of a cheque or on the campaign designation line on the online form.