E3 Program Now Accepting Applications for 2018-2019

E3 Youth Philanthropy Program members completing a service project at Deer Hollow Farm. From left to right: Jaime Villarreal, Deer Hollow Farm; Gray Tynefiled; Lauren Kiachian; Oliver Yu; Naomi Zimmerman; Kian Nikzad


E3 Youth Philanthropy, a program of the Los Altos Community Foundation, is now accepting applications from students entering 10th or 11th grade this fall.

E3 educates, engages, and empowers local youth to create positive change in their communities. Students who live in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills or Mountain View, and/or attend school in one of those three communities are welcome to apply.  Applications will be accepted March 1 – 30, 2018.

Apply for E3

The E3 program term is a two-year commitment. Students meet twice a month in Los Altos, from 7:00-9:00 pm, mid-August through May.

Through E3, program participants will:

  • Learn from local philanthropists about nonprofits and the positive impacts of strategic giving
  • Design and participate in service projects
  • Connect with local nonprofit organizations
  • Become effective grant-makers and deliberate funding priorities
  • Research, analyze, and advocate for potential grant recipients
  • Develop leadership and communication skills

Visit the E3 Youth Philanthropy page to learn more

E3 Students service project
E3 Youth Philanthropy Program members completing a service project at Deer Hollow Farm. From left to right: Jaime Villarreal, Deer Hollow Farm; Gray Tynefiled; Lauren Kiachian; Oliver Yu; Naomi Zimmerman; Kian Nikzad


E3 Youth Philanthropy’s Sana Khader 2017 Summer Solstice Talk

Sana participated in LACF’s E3 Youth Philanthropy program for four years and will attend UC Berkeley this fall.
Sana participated in LACF’s E3 Youth Philanthropy program for four years and will attend UC Berkeley this fall.

Hello everyone. As you may or may not know, E3 is a youth program sponsored by LACF. We are a group of about 25 high schoolers, and each year, we receive a $10,000 grant from the Foundation to give to local nonprofits.

Throughout the year, we evaluate grants from various organizations and decide if and how much money they will receive. We also plan service projects and volunteer. It’s absolutely incredible that this type of experience is available to us as teenagers. The responsibility of distributing such a large amount of money has made me realize the value and impact of giving money away. We don’t have to wait to be adults to be philanthropists or to give away money or drive social change; we have that opportunity right here.

I entered E3 as a ninth-grader who didn’t know all that much about our community and the very real, very large problems that exist within it. But through my time at E3, I learned about my community and its issues, but more importantly, the motivated, dedicated people who were working toward solving those problems. I’ve had the privilege to learn from people working on the issues of hunger, poverty, the environment, literacy, mental health… the list goes on and on. E3 opened my eyes to a world of not just problems, but also solutions.

I remember we funded the Mountain View Police Officers’ Association for their Cops and Gobblers event, where the community comes together to package baskets of food and toys for families who can’t provide a Thanksgiving meal to their family. I was at first shocked to hear about how big an issue hunger is in my hometown, but also so in awe of the police officers who took it upon themselves to start this event.

E3 not only shows us how people can improve their communities, but also encourages us to do the same. Each year, we split up into groups and plan service projects. My group decided to organize a beautification day at Castro Elementary School in Mountain View. The whole process included delegating roles, working with school administration, scoping out the campus beforehand, collecting supplies and finally leading the event itself. It was one of my best experiences in all of high school. I learned how to organize an event like that, but more importantly, I learned how fun it can be when you really care about what you’re doing. I really cared about cleaning up Castro and planting in the garden and just making it a better place for students to learn and grow, and that’s why I enjoyed organizing the event.
And that’s what I’ve taken away from E3. After years of talking to nonprofit founders and volunteering at various events, it’s obvious that the people in charge truly care about what they’re doing, and that’s what affects change. E3 has taught me that I can and should devote my energy to working towards causes that I care about, because I really can make a difference. I am so thankful to the Foundation for this experience, and I am just happy to know that the program will continue to influence other students like me in the future. 

Thank you to E3 and LACF from Mariano Castro Elementary School

E3 awarded a grant to pilot MathUnboxed to students and their families at Mariano Castro Elementary School, Mountain View. Thank you to the E3 Leadership Board for critical seed funding to launch MathUnboxed!

This program distributed folders to First, Second and Third graders. Each folder contains a set of take-home math games for students to play with their families.

The E3 Youth Philanthropy Program brings together local high school students to help realize their vision and hopes for social change.

E3, also known as E-Cubed, seeks to educate, engage, and empower local youth to effect positive change in their local and global communities through service learning, leadership training, and grant-making activities.  E3 is one of three youth-oriented programs sponsored by the Los Altos Community Foundation.


Applications for the 2015-16 program are now open

E3 New Member Photo

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If you are currently in 8th, 9th, or 10th grade, a Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, or Mountain View resident, or attend school in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, or Mountain View, we invite you to apply to become a member of next year’s E3 program. The program runs from late August, 2015 through early June 2016. As a program member, you will:

  • Develop your leadership and communication skills
  • Design and participate in monthly service projects
  • Connect with local nonprofit organizations
  • Learn from local philanthropists about the potential impact of giving
  • Become an effective grant-maker and strategic youth philanthropist

The E3 program term is for two years. We will meet on Wednesday evenings 7-9pm, from late August -early June. We have an all-day retreat in August and service projects (weekends and/or evenings) throughout the year.

Applications (and letters of recommendation) are due by 9am April 27 2015.

The fee to participate is $150 per year. Financial assistance is available.

Questions? Contact Program Director: Skye DeLano or Advisor Catherine Herzog   e3youth@gmail.com

New E3 Video

We have a great new video introducing the philosophy behind E3 Youth Philanthropy. This is a philanthropy program completely run by kids with guidance from E3 director Skye.

The future of philanthropy is in great hands with this group.