Hawaiʻi Youth Sustainability Challenge

Program Overview

**2018-2019 DEADLINE CLOSED**

Mahalo to all of those who applied!

A partnership between Kupu and Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation, the Hawaiʻi Youth Sustainability Challenge (HYSC) is an initiative to empower Hawaiʻi youth to create solutions to conservation and sustainability challenges in their schools and communities. Students in public, private, and charter schools from grades 6-12 are invited to apply to receive funding and mentorship from an expert in conservation, sustainability, and/or technology to support their innovative and grassroots environmental initiatives. These projects will create new and sustainable solutions for their schools and communities.



HYSC provides mini-grants and mentorship from an expert in conservation, sustainability, and/or technology to students to support them as they design and implement their own innovative and creative sustainability ideas and projects for their schools and communities.


Students grades 6-12, together with a teacher advisor, may propose project ideas based on their environmental passions and desire to create sustainable, localized change.


Applications are now available and close on Friday, October 19, 2018 **deadline extended!** Wednesday, October 24, 2018. Projects are implemented in the spring semester.


HYSC mini-grant applications will be available online at the Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation website portal. Click here to apply.


  1. Applications Open

    Applications are now open on the Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation website.
  2. Applications Close

    Applications for the 2018-2019 Challenge close on October 19th, 2018 - the Friday after Fall Break Wednesday, October 24, 2018 - deadline extended
  3. Award Winners Notified

    HYSC Selection Committee notifies mini-grant award winners. Award winners accept funds and are matched with an expert in conservation, sustainability, and/or technology for mentorship.
  4. Grant Money Awarded – Project Implementation Begins

    Mini-grant funds are awarded. Students begin to build and implement their innovative solutions. Project teams meet with their mentor, either in-person or remotely.
  5. Final Reporting / Selection for HCC

    Final reporting requirements are due by the end of the school year. Project teams are selected to present at the Hawaiʻi Conservation Conference (HCC).
  6. Hawai’i Conservation Conference

    The 26th annual Hawaiʻi Conservation Conference takes place in  July. Selected students present their projects.


HYSC is a legacy initiative of the 2016 International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress held in Hawaiʻi. The concept for the HYSC initiative was first announced by First Lady Mrs. Dawn Amano-Ige at the Congress. The goal of the initiative is to inspire youth to be intentionally engaged in the environment through action, advocacy, and education.

The 2018-2019 Hawaiʻi Youth Sustainability Challenge is supported by:

HouseMart * Finance Factors

The 2017-2018 Hawaiʻi Youth Sustainability Challenge would not be possible without the support from:

FedEx Cares * HouseMart * Finance Factors

In accordance with Federal Law, Kupu is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability