Am I Eligible?

Please read through our questions below and their suggested answers. If you cannot answer a question according to the suggestion, please contact to ask if you are eligible.


Do you have an idea that will change your community?

  • If no:  All proposed projects must present a solution for a pressing social problem.

Do you have a concrete, thought-out plan to carry out your idea?

  • If no:  Your project must lay out how you will carry out the idea and on what timeline.

Does your idea address a deep rooted problem?

  • If no:  You must be able to clearly describe the problem you address.  Just wanting to make the world a better place is not enough.  Successful proposals will explain a precise challenge

Is the project in a country with a US State Department Travel Warning?

  • If yes:  We cannot allow students to travel to countries with US travel warnings because of liability.

Does the local population have ownership of the project?

  • If no:  In order for projects to be sustainable, we believe they must be owned and led by the community.

Is your project feasible considering our funding scope (We normally max out at $10,000 and often times can only provide $5,000)

  • If no:  If the project costs more than $10,000 there is a slim chance it will be funded. 

Is there a direct role for American college students to play?

  • If no:  Nourish strives to create learning opportunities for its members by identifying hands on experiences.  A strong proposal will offer multiple avenues for students to participate.  In the past students, have helped with construction, promotional materials and educational programs.  Innovating a unique way for students to contribute will set your application apart. 

Will the students be replacing local workers?

  • If yes:  It is important to us that we do not replace local laborers.  If locals can be hired, we do not want to replace them.

Will the students be able to carry out the volunteer work responsibly?  (i.e. students are not expected to do something that requires professional training or something that they are not prepared to do since they are not residents of the community)

  • If no:  If the proposal calls for students to design a new program, or conduct a program in which they could do actual harm (e.g. health education), we will not be able to fund the project.  Students should not be asked to manage a project, but instead be supporters, extra hands, and consultants.

Is the project sustainable?

  • If no:  The project must be able to sustain itself.  If it requires further funding, where is the funding coming from?  If it requires continued staff support, for example at a school, what incentives exist for the staff to stay with the project?  Projects that can achieve financial sustainability will set themselves apart.  If a project could be financed as a 0% loan, it would truly be in a league of its own.

Does the project have a knowledgeable local leader who is willing to work with American college students and make this a priority?

  • If no:  We put a lot of work into our relationships.  We expect our partners to share in the costs of the project and communicate consistently with our team.

Selection Criteria

Nourish seeks partnerships to eradicate poverty at the community level.  We look for the following traits in partners:

Strong, local leadership:  There are plenty of good ideas in the world, and the difference between a successful project and an unsuccessful one is more often than not the people driving it.  We are concerned with the people who are leading the project, not just the idea.  In order for a project to be funded, it must have a qualified project leader who has experience in the community and is passionate about the project. 

Community Ownership:  We support projects which are owned by the community.  In order for the project to be sustainable, we believe it must be driven by the community. 

Role for Students:  At our core, we seek community partners which view students as able and active participants who can provide value to the project.  Proposals which find creative ways to engage students for the benefit of the community will have a greater chance of being funded.   

Compelling Idea:  We aim for projects that can achieve the greatest social impact possible.  What challenge is the project addressing?  How compelling is the challenge and the solution?  It is important to us that projects are productive with their funds.

Feasibility:  Nourish chapters are normally able to fund between $5,000 and $10,000.  We have done two projects outside of this range; however, most fall within this scope.  Additionally, the less expensive a project is, the more feasible it will be for chapters to fund.

Clear Plan:  We support ideas which are supported by thought out plans which have a clear timeline as well as clear results. 

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