About Minnesota Civic Youth

Kids used to learn about civics in school. In fact, the original intent of public education was to prepare students to participate in our democratic society. In the past few decades, the focus of public education has turned sharply toward science, math and literacy as we seek to help students develop employable skills. The fact is, students need both: preparation to participate in the workforce and preparation to participate in society.

Today’s students are tomorrow’s leaders. They need to know how their governments and communities work, understand key issues and different perspectives, and be able to articulate their opinions with respect and civility. Minnesota Civic Youth is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization focused on developing and supporting programs and activities that give young people across the state the knowledge, skills, confidence and desire to be community leaders and active citizens.

Our Mission

To shape and secure the future of democracy by preparing young people for a life of informed, active citizenship.

Our Approach

Minnesota Civic Youth directly engages students in hands-on experiences to narrow learning opportunity gaps and build civic literacy and leadership knowledge, interests, and skills. From a child’s first vote to a youth’s first community leadership role and beyond, our programs and activities are guided by four core principles:

  • Participants’ voices are encouraged, valued and incorporated to the fullest extent possible
  • The experiences, knowledge, perspectives and concerns of participants are incorporated to the fullest extent possible
  • Participants learn by doing, with a focus on collective action
  • Participant reflection and analysis are central to the process.


MinnesoClean Water Land & Legacy Amendmentta Civic Youth is funded in part through a grant from the Minnesota Legacy Amendment Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, and the citizens of Minnesota.