Financial Aid

Offering financial aid makes the outdoors more accessible.

The American Youth Foundation is committed to making the camp experience accessible to as many youth as possible. As a nonprofit foundation fueled by generous donations from our alumni and families, the AYF offsets the price of every program for every participant. Tuition revenue does not cover the true cost of our programs. The foundation pays almost one-third of each participant’s cost, bringing the tuition down for all.

In addition, participants and their families are invited to apply for financial support to make summer camp and conference more affordable.

Financial Aid
Families are encouraged to apply for financial aid to attend National Leadership Conference and summer camp at Miniwanca and Merrowvista. Financial aid is need-based and determined by household income and size, as well as individual circumstances.

Funds are limited and usually depleted by mid-spring, so families are encouraged to apply for financial aid as soon as possible. The AYF cannot guarantee that everyone who applies will receive financial assistance.

We make every effort to provide financial aid to campers for the entirety of their time in AYF programs. If your family has received aid in the past, the AYF will prioritize your family to receive aid for future summers, but you must reapply for aid each year.

How to Apply
To apply for Financial Aid, read through the financial aid presentation to learn the basics of the process. Register your camper for their prospective program at Miniwanca or Merrowvista. On the final page of the registration process, you can request an application for financial aid. An AYF Client Relations Manger will email you a financial aid application and will assist you with the process.

Summer Camp Scholarships

Summer camp scholarships are merit-based and awarded through community partner organizations who participate in programs in the fall, winter, or spring. Contact Jessica Cheney at Miniwanca or Jamie O’Hagin at Merrowvista for more information about scholarship funds.

Learn more about scholarship criteria and the application process. Learn more about our School and Community Programs at Miniwanca and Merrowvista.

National Leadership Conference Scholarships

There are three scholarship opportunities available to NLC participants: the Jennifer Mason Scholarship, the Danny Grad Scholarship, and the I Dare You! Scholarship. Learn more about requirements and application process for each.

National Leadership Award recipients are eligible to apply for the I Dare You! Scholarship. Learn more about the National Leadership Awards and how to recognize young leaders in your community.

Other Available Discounts

Sibling Discount: Families registering more than one camper are eligible for a sibling tuition discount. Families pay the full tuition of the program with the highest cost, then receive 5% off each additional camper’s program. For example, families pay the full tuition for their oldest Explorer camper and receive 5% off their younger Seeker’s tuition.

Seasonal Staff Discount: Paid seasonal staff members with camper-aged children are eligible for a full or partial tuition discount.

Full-Time Staff Discount: Full-time staff with camper-aged children are eligible for a full tuition discount.

Contact Jamie O’Hagin at Merrowvista or Jessica Cheney at Miniwanca for more information about these discounts.

 



Financial Aid FAQ

Who qualifies for financial aid?

Financial aid awards are need-based and determined by household income and size, as well as individual circumstances.

How do I apply for financial aid?

Families can apply for financial aid during the registration process. Be prepared to submit copies of supporting documents including your latest filed IRS Federal Income Tax form, including signature page (ex: Form 1040, Form 1040 A, Form 1040 C, Form 1040 ES, Form 1040 EZ, Form 1040 NH, or Form 1040 SS).

How much financial aid will I receive?

The financial aid committee determines how much aid is awarded to each camper based on household size and income, as well as individual circumstances.

My camper received financial support in the past. Do I need to reapply this year?

Yes. To determine need and to allocate funds equitably, you must complete the financial aid application each year.

What is the deadline to apply for financial aid?

Funds are limited and usually depleted by mid-spring, so families are encouraged to apply for financial aid as soon as possible. Applications are accepted monthly on a rolling basis until May 1.

When will I know if my camper will receive financial aid?

The AYF will notify camper families about their award amount no later than 30 days after their financial aid application was submitted.

My yearly income does not qualify our family for financial aid, but we are facing an unexpected hardship. Can we still apply for financial aid?

Yes, you should apply even if you do not meet the income and household size criteria. The AYF understand that the unexpected happens. Please include information about your current circumstances so we can make an informed decision. The AYF cannot guarantee that everyone who applies will receive financial assistance.

Can I apply for a scholarship if my camper does not attend an AYF partner school or community organization?

Scholarships are only available through our school and community partners. We encourage you to apply for financial aid to receive tuition assistance.