Charlottesville, VA—Virginia Foundation for the Humanities (VFH) announces $55,500 in recent grants to eleven nonprofit organizations in support of public humanities programs for audiences throughout the Commonwealth and beyond.
The VFH Grant Program responds directly to the interests and concerns of local communities in Virginia, as well as to the needs of the educational organizations that serve them. Since 1974, VFH has awarded more than 4,000 grants, bringing scholars and citizens together to promote a greater understanding of the humanities.
“Giving grants is one of the most effective ways VFH reaches every part of the Commonwealth and supports organizations that are doing incredible work,” said Matthew Gibson, VFH executive director. “Storytelling is central to our mission, and this most recent grant cycle supports some amazing community-based stories that highlight the breadth and diversity of our great state.” VFH grant projects reach an estimated annual audience of 1.5 million, with an average 4:1 dollar match.
As a result of VFH grant funding, exhibits, public forums and discussions, media programs (film, video, radio, and digital media), publications, research, teachers’ institutes and seminars, oral history projects, lectures and conferences, and other kinds of programs have harnessed the power of the humanities to address important issues and enrich the cultural life of the state.
The following organizations received grants from VFH in December 2017:
Clinch River Educational Center (Abingdon): $6,000— A documentary film exploring Appalachian identity and community through the life of Earl Gilmore, a gay, African American, Christian blues singer, coal miner, and lifelong resident of Clinchco, Virginia.
Coffee House Films, Inc. (Chicago, IL): $2,500— Virginia-based research for a feature-length documentary film on the life of author William Faulkner and the enduring impact of his work on American culture.
Embrace Richmond (Richmond): $4,500— A multi-faceted project using stories and storytelling to build community in the rapidly changing Richmond neighborhood of Brookland Park.
Fairfield Foundation (Gloucester): $4,500—Research and planning for a print publication and online resource exploring African American life and history in the Middle Peninsula region of Virginia through sites once listed in the “Green Book,” a publication used by African American travelers during Jim Crow segregation.
Furious Flower Poetry Center (Harrisonburg): $2,000— A public reading and panel discussion on the topic “Poetry Without Borders,” featuring contemporary African American poets Tyehimba Jess, Brenda Marie Osbey, and Anastasia Renee.
Hampton Roads Educational Telecommunications Association, Inc. dba WHRO (Norfolk): $4,500— Interviews, consultation with local historians, production, and distribution of a series of radio programs on the “Do-Drop Inn,” an African-American cultural landmark on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.
Ocean Ana Rising, Inc. (Bowie, MD): $6,000—Research and planning for a documentary film on the United Order of the Tents, the oldest black women’s organization in the country, founded in 1865 by two enslaved Virginia women.
Philippine Cultural Center of Virginia (Virginia Beach): $8,000—A two-day “Content Academy” for teachers and development of print and online resources on Philippine-American history and the history of the Filipino community in Hampton roads.
Taubman Museum of Art (Roanoke): $7,000—A print publication and facilitated panel discussion in which African immigrants and refugees in the Roanoke Valley will share their own migration stories in conjunction with a major new exhibit of artworks from the African diaspora.
The Mariners’ Museum (Newport News): $6,000—An exhibit and public symposium on the role of Newport News, Virginia in World War I.
Virginia Symphony Orchestra (Norfolk): $4,500—An exhibit, printed booklet, and series of pre-concert lectures to accompany the premiere of a new orchestral work inspired by the history of rail transportation in Virginia and by the documentary photographs of O. Winston Link.
Photo: The story of Dorothy Logan and other Virginia members of The United Order of the Tents, the oldest black women’s organization in the U.S., will be shared in an upcoming VFH-funded documentary film project by Ocean Ana Rising, Inc.
About VFH Grants:
The Open Grant Program welcomes proposals on a wide range of subjects, for projects in any format, with awards up to $10,000. Deadlines are April 15th and October 15th. Draft proposals are strongly encouraged. The Discretionary Grant Program provides smaller grants of up to $3,000. There is no deadline for this program, but applicants should contact VFH staff in advance before submitting a proposal. For more information, visit VirginiaHumanities.org/Grants.
The mission of Virginia Foundation for the Humanities (VFH) is to connect people and ideas to explore the human experience and inspire cultural engagement. VFH reaches an estimated annual audience of 23 million through community programs, websites and digital initiatives, grants and fellowships, radio programs and podcasts, the Virginia Folklife Program, and the Virginia Center for the Book. To learn more, visit VirginiaHumanities.org.