DC Oral History Collaborative Partnership Grants (For Public Projects and Events)

This opportunity provides financial and capacity building resources to community organizations and individuals (“partners”) interested in using existing oral history collections to produce public humanities projects. Potential projects may focus on: neighborhoods, social organizations, political history, labor, faith-based groups, cultural trends, historic events, or other themes that can draw on one or more collections of oral histories. All projects must be thematically focused on Washington, DC and must benefit the residents of Washington, DC. Potential projects may include: exhibitions, listening stations, written research, film/video, curricula for K-12 and higher education, websites, and computer applications. Partnership proposals will be due in January, reviewed in February, and selected projects will be announced in March.
Selected partners will work in conjunction with staff and consultants from the DC Oral History Collaborative throughout the course of their projects.
Award Amount: 
Applicants may request up to $8,000 depending on the scope of their projects.
The deadline for this opportunity has passed.

“How to apply” Presentation

Project Period:
This opportunity is for projects conducted between March 12, 2019 and September 30, 2019.
What are we looking for?
Successful applications will propose projects that bring existing oral history interviews about Washington, DC’s life, history and culture out of libraries, archives, and personal collections, and into the public view.  Proposals must identify which oral history collections will be used, which audience(s) the project will reach, and which theme, focus, or research question they aim to illuminate. Each funded project will result in a lasting digital final product that will be added to HumanitiesDC’s DC Digital Museum. Click here to download the full RFP.
About the DC Oral History Collaborative:
The DC Oral History Collaborative is an ambitious city-wide initiative to document and preserve the history of Washington’s residents and communities through the collection of oral histories. The project will survey and publicize existing oral history collections, provide grants and training for scholars and amateur historians to launch new oral history projects, and establish an interactive, accessible platform where the city’s memories can benefit residents and scholars for generations to come. The Collaborative is a partnership of HumanitiesDC, The Historical Society of Washington, D.C., and the DC Public Library.
What is Oral History:
“[Oral history is] distinguished from other forms of interviews by its content and extent. Oral history interviews seek an in-depth account of personal experience and reflections, with sufficient time allowed for the narrators to give their story the fullness they desire. The content of oral history interviews is grounded in reflections on the past as opposed to commentary on purely contemporary events.”
Qualifying Questions:
1. Does the proposed project have Washington, DC or one of its communities or neighborhoods as its primary geographic focus?
2. Will the proposed project occur within the grant period (March 12, 2019 – September 30, 2019)?
3. Will the project be accessible to Washington, DC residents?
4. Have the oral history interviews to be used been identified?
5. Will the project result in a lasting final product for the DC Digital Museum archive, either as the main objective of the grant or as a secondary objective?
6. Has the applying organization or individual successfully closed out any previously held HumanitiesDC grants that are beyond their final reporting deadline? Organizations or individuals with delinquent grants of any type from HumanitiesDC are ineligible to apply. Any overdue grant final reports must be submitted AND closed out 15 days prior to the proposal deadline for this RFP.
Additional Requirements:
1. All partnership projects will be supported by a professional oral historian contracted by the DC Oral History Collaborative. This consultant will be responsible for providing support and advice to project directors as well as ensuring that all project work is progressing smoothly.
2. The oral history consultant will schedule several required check-in sessions with partnership project directors over the course of the project period. This may include 3-4 meetings with the entire grantee cohort for this program and cycle.
3. All partnership projects must participate in joint marketing and communications campaigns in support of the DC Oral History Collaborative during the grant period.
1. No member of, nor delegate to Congress, Mayor, or City Council member, nor officer nor employee of the District, nor officer nor employee of the DC Public Library may benefit financially from a partnership grant.
2. Awardees agree to document all grant expenditures and provide a final report at the end of the project period using forms provided by HumanitiesDC.
3. Awarded applicants will receive 80% of the full amount of the grant upon their signature of the partnership agreement document. The remaining 20% will be paid no later than August 31st, 2019 after successful completion of a standard set of grantee milestones. All grant funds must be expended before September 30, 2019.
4. Any changes to the scope or budget of a partnership project must be communicated to HumanitiesDC in writing and approved by both the Consulting Oral Historian and the Deputy Director of Programs.
5. Awarded applicants will sign grant conditions that constitute a legally binding contract between HumanitiesDC and the applicant’s sponsoring organization or a designated responsible party. The organization or responsible party will be legally obligated to complete the project under the terms of the grant conditions.
6. 100% of awarded grant funds must be applied to direct program costs. This may include salary, consulting fees, and/or honoraria for individuals working on the project, but cannot include indirect costs, overhead, rent, utilities, or administrative fees.
7. All final products collected as part of this partnership grant opportunity will be collected by the DC Oral History Collaborative and made available to the DC Public Library for accession to their Special Collections and will be archived in HumanitiesDC’s DC Digital Museum. Awarded grantees will retain the shared rights with the DCOHC, HumanitiesDC, and the DCPL to retain copies, publicly distribute, and publish derivative works based on the materials they collect.
How is this opportunity different from a standard HumanitiesDC grant?
1. Applicants do not have to represent 501(c)3 non-profit organizations. Projects conducted by individuals or for-profit entities must select a responsible party to sign, and be liable for upholding, the grant conditions document. Please note that HumanitiesDC does not withhold taxes from grant payments. Awarded organizations and individuals are required to report HumanitiesDC grants as income in accordance with Federal and Local laws.
2. Organizations with open HumanitiesDC grants may still apply for a DCOHC partnership grant. Any oral history project supported through the DCOHC must be clearly distinct from a project already supported by an open HumanitiesDC grant.
3. The DCOHC funding opportunity supports a partnership between the Collaborative and the funded entity. The DCOHC will work with all funded projects, throughout the grant period, to ensure their use of best practices and to facilitate public communications efforts.
4. The DCOHC funding opportunity does not require a “Humanities Scholar” as a separate role. Applications may be strengthened if they show engagement by a humanities professional, but scholars working with the DCOHC will provide advice and support to every project.
How to Apply:

Click here to access HumanitiesDC’s online grants portal.
If you or your organization have applied for funding from HumanitiesDC in the past, please DO NOT create a new applicant profile. Use your organization’s existing login credentials. If you are not sure if you organization has an existing profile, please contact Jasper Collier at jcollier@wdchumanities.org or 202-747-6470.

Note that applicants to this opportunity are not required to represent a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. If you have an EIN number, please enter it in the appropriate field in the registration form. If you do not have an EIN number input 11-11111 as a placeholder.