Propper Daley

Case Study

Wonder Grants

Shawn Mendes


Creating a virtuous cycle of youth changemaking

Project Type

Signature Impact Initiative

Impact Area

Youth Activism

Client Type


Client Need

Inspired by young changemakers he met while on tour, Shawn Mendes founded the Shawn Mendes Foundation in 2019. Shawn recognized that, while he cared deeply about many different issues, he did not feel he was an expert in any specific impact area. He recognized that the greatest way he could give back was by embracing this, and to openly communicate that it was okay to be just starting out on your changemaking journey and to learn from youth who were creating change in the world. Propper Daley supported the Shawn Mendes Foundation in developing its strategy to leveraging Shawn’s creative IP, enabling those who choose to dream, think big, and to wonder about how to make change and improve the world.

Our Approach

Through interviews and initial research, PD and the Foundation quickly found that for many young people, the threshold to engaging in social activism was the de-stigmatization of the phrase “I don’t know,” when speaking about impact topics. The Foundation focuses on sharing educational tools and opportunities to help changemakers know that part of activism is constant learning, and that anyone can make change at a local level. Shawn invites his fans and followers to join him on a learning journey as he explores his own philanthropic passions.


As its signature initiative, the Foundation gives out Wonder Grants to youth doing work on the ground in various issue areas including education, mental health, social activism, environment, food insecurity, and film. PD identifies and manages the relationships with these changemakers including administering financial support through mini-grants and providing guidance and support as they continue their work.


To tie into the Foundation mission of bringing his fans on an impact learning journey,  Shawn shares his platform with Wonder Grant recipients who each get an opportunity to “takeover” Shawn or The Shawn Mendes Foundation’s social media channels to share any information they would like to about their work.. The activists are able to share causes, messages, organizations, resources, and motivational tips with Shawn’s vast audience of potential changemakers around the world.


After launching the program in 2020, over $500,000 has been raised for grant distribution for  youth changemakers all over the world. The Wonder Grant takeovers have also garnered impressive impact results including 10,000+ direct shares, 15M online impressions and the program has been featured in publications such as Billboard and People Magazine.

  • $500,000 raised for grant distribution

  • 10,000+ Wonder Grant Takeovers Direct Shares

  • 15M Online Impressions

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