As very young Gen Yers (yes, yes, they might already be part of whatever the next generation after Y is), the teenagers displayed a key characteristic of Gen Y-being really hands on with everything we do.
"'These teens are learning how to run their own nonprofit foundations, and they are learning how to evaluate request for proposals, and how to raise large amounts of money by hosting fundraisers and going to their parents and their parents' friends to harness the power of their personal connections.'"
And boy are they creative. One teen charged a hefty $75 admission for a musical evening he hosted (and played at). They were the ultimate sneezers asking everyone they knew for financial support. They had board meetings, learned from experts, and got into the "nitty gritty" of fundraising, including helping decide who would receive all the money raised.
That's the secret power of Gen Yers-we may not have a lot of funds ourselves, but we are great at getting funds out of others. As the article notes, these teenagers asked for money from their doctors, their families, anyone who had been invited to their bar/bat mitzvahs. Just as we are influenced by our elders, so we influence them. When we get excited about something, and tell everyone we know about it. That includes seniors, boomers, Xers. It's trickle up fundraising.