GRow 1000 Business Application

Want to invest in the city's youth? Join our program to connect our youth to meaningful job opportunities this summer.

Ways you could invest with us:

1) Invest in our youth by sponsoring student wages = $1,500 per employed youth.

2) Companies/organizations to host 5, 10, 20, 50 youth and pay their stipend ($7,500; $15,000; $30,000; $75,000)

Would you prefer to send a check? Write your check to Our Community's Children with the memo: GRow 1000.

Send your check to the below address:

Our Community's Children

300 Monroe Ave NW suite 921

Grand Rapids, MI 49503

3) Help students explore careers, see the City through a new lens.

4) Introduce new professional development networks, learn work-life skills

Apply and/or donate here

We have over 9,000 youth in Grand Rapids between the ages of 15 and 21 with 73% who are persons of color. 

We are committed as a city to ensure these young people have access to opportunities that will help them succeed in work and in life. 

We want to offer youth, particularly students from the Grand Rapids Public Schools and Grand Rapids Community College, access to our largest employers, our greatest institutions, and our local businesses with a 120-hour work experience.

Program participants

To help local youth find summer employment, the following are program requirements.

Participants must be:

  • Between the ages of 15-21 (as of July 22, 2020)
  • Grand Rapids area residents
  • Eligible to work in the United States


The GRow 1000 program begins with training from the City. This training will cover the following topics:

  • Program orientation (program overview, stipends, expectations, etc.)
  • Workplace safety protocols
  • Workplace etiquette
  • Dressing for success
  • Stress and conflict management


Participants' summer jobs will start on or around Monday, July 13. It will then be done on or around Friday, August 14.

Participants may work up to a maximum of 20 hours per week. These hours may occur evenings, weekends or week days. 

    Thank you for joining the GRow1000 dedicated to giving city youth valuable employment opportunities now and for their future. 

    Below are key expectations and some resources to help you provide the best quality experience.

    Employer placement expectations

    • Provide an orientation of your business or organization
    • Expose young people to your industry, the careers available, and the earning potential through job shadowing, meetings, and giving assignments
    • Provide a workplace supervisor/mentor to oversee the placement
    • Review learning objectives and goals with the participant in the first week and be clear as to expectations and who to go to for questions.  Comply with workforce age appropriate activities.  Persons under 18 cannot be in a hazardous industry or operate certain types of machinery. See Department of Labor Fair Standards Act.
    • Have a plan of action for what the person will doing for each week of placement. Explain how assignments contribute to the overall success of the organization
    • Youth will be submitting their time cards online to City Hall here. If there are exceptions and the participant works less than 20 hours, please send an email with the participants name and number of hours worked to
    • Cover wages for placement per agreement with the City of Grand Rapids. An invoice will be sent

    City of Grand Rapids will:

    • Be the employer of record
    • Coordinate the placement agreements with businesses
    • Place the participant
    • Offer virtual training of 5 hours to participants prior to placement
    • Pay the participant every two weeks
    • Invoice you for reimbursement of wages where applicable
    • Provide support as and when needed for a successful placement

    Useful resources

    GRow1000 Employer FAQs

    Youth Labor Age Requirements

    What to know about Generation Z born after 1998

    Workplace Equity

    Still have questions? Check out our FAQs below.

    GRow 1000 FAQs(PDF, 121KB)