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Running Strong is giving away fifty $10,000 grants over the next five years to jumpstart the dreams of American Indian youth.

“Pursuit of a dream can heal a broken soul.”  “God has given me the ability.  The rest is up to me.  Believe.  Believe.  Believe.” – Billy Mills

Check out our new Dreamstarter video! 

DreamstarterRunning Strong for American Indian Youth® believes in the dreams of young American Indians: creating stronger communities, overcoming poverty, and building a better tomorrow for themselves and their families.

Fifty years ago, Billy Mills achieved his dream of winning an Olympic gold medal, and since then, he has used that victory to help him give back to the American Indian community. To celebrate Billy’s dream and his leadership, Running Strong is proud to announce the DreamstarterTM grant program to help the next generation of American Indian youth make their dreams come true.

How far and wide is the reach of the Dreamstarter program?

The Dreamstarter program and it's companion project, Dreamstarter Teacher, are both impacting communities around the entire country! 


For the next 5 years, Running Strong will provide ten $10,000 grants each year to community non-profits who will mentor a young Dreamstarter and work with them to implement a project inspired by the young person’s dream for her or his community. Beginning October 14th, Teams of one nonprofit organization and one Native American youth should work together to complete a Dreamstarter application outlining their idea, its funding needs, and how it will benefit youth. 

Each year, Dreamstarter 50x$10K grants will be awarded to projects addressing a different theme. The themes are: 
Year 1 (2015-2016):  Wellness
Year 2 (2016-2017):  Arts & Culture
Year 3 (2017-2018):  Education
Year 4 (2018-2019):  Science & the Environment
Year 5 (2019-2020):  Entrepreneurs

Dreamstarter Grants also include:

Meet the Dreamstarters








Explore This Section

  • Meet the Dreamstarters

    Find answers in our Frequently Asked Questions section.

  • Application & How to Apply

    Dreamstarter applicants and Mentor Organizations team up to apply for a Dreamstarter grant together. Each Dreamstarter Application must be signed and submitted by both the Applicant and the Mentor Organization.

  • Dreamstarter Teacher

    In 2016, we introduced a new project to help jumpstart more dreams for American Indian students: Dreamstarter Teacher.

  • Donate to Dreamstarter

    Running Strong is giving away fifty $10,000 grants over the next five years to jumpstart the dreams of American Indian youth.

  • Dreamstarter Q&A Chat

    Chat Live on 11/14/17 at 6pm Eastern Standard Time. Join Running Strong staff and some previous Dreamstarters to talk about Dreamstarter Year 4: Science & the Environment

Support Running Strong!

We invite you to make a difference in the lives of American Indian youth today by donating to our cause.