American Rescue Plan Recovery Grants for Humanities

Request for Proposals
Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands

Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Thursday, September 30th, 2021

Overview 
 
In light of the complex COVID-19 pandemic, state and jurisdictional humanities councils are uniquely positioned to provide emergency and ongoing funding from the American Rescue Plan (ARP) appropriation to museums, libraries, archives, historic sites, and other nonprofits impacted by the pandemic in their state or jurisdiction. (Nationally, the councils serve the smallest and most vulnerable communities and institutions and are able to reach into areas that receive few other cultural resources.) To meet this need, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) has distributed $51.6 million in funding to the 56 state and jurisdictional humanities councils and interim partners, the agency’s first awards under the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021. These funds will support humanities organizations, programs, and professionals at the local level, advancing economic recovery within a cultural sector devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
The Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands (CFVI) applied for and was awarded NEH funding that CFVI will subaward to eligible entities throughout the USVI to support humanities programming and activities.

The term 'humanities' includes, but is not limited to, the study and interpretation of the following: language, both modern and classical; linguistics; literature; history; jurisprudence; philosophy; archaeology; comparative religion; ethics; the history, criticism and theory of the arts; those aspects of the social sciences which have humanistic content and employ humanistic methods; and the study and application of the humanities to the human environment with particular attention to reflecting our diverse heritage, traditions, and history and to the relevance of the humanities to the current conditions of national life. (Source: NEH.gov)
Summary of Funding

$200,000 is available to fund eligible entities.

  • Grants of up to $20,000 are available to facilitate the recovery of humanities organizations and humanities programming from the COVID-19 pandemic, via humanities programs, projects, and initiatives such as book festivals, literacy campaigns, speaker’s bureaus, teacher development, cultural tourism, humanities publications, films, exhibitions, and projects that preserve and provide access to cultural and educational resources in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • Applicants must indicate how they have been adversely impacted by the pandemic in their applications, consistent with the purposes of the American Rescue Plan.
  • Subawards will be provided to support the following activities, with priority going to humanities-focused organizations:
  • Humanities programming and activities
  • Technical/consultant needs related to a digital transition or in support of preservation and access programs (equipment costs cannot exceed 20% of a subaward).
  • Expansion, due to the effects of the coronavirus, of outdoor and virtual humanities programming and activities, from traditional environments to those that are more accessible.
  • Allowable activities for humanities-focused organizations only (Note: organizations whose mission falls outside of the humanities and the humanistic social sciences are not eligible to receive funding for the below items):
  • General operating costs of humanities focused organizations.
  • Strategic planning and capacity building efforts related to preparing, responding to, and recovering from the coronavirus. 
  • Equity assessments and planning related to coronavirus and the economic crisis.
  • The maximum amount for which an entity may apply is $20,000.
  • As required by federal guidelines, organizations will be required to have a DUNS number in order to obligate funds (though applications can be submitted without one). A DUNS number can take up to two business days to receive. You may acquire a DUNS number from the D&B D-U-N-S Request Service for U.S. Federal Government Contractors and Assistance Awardees. 
  • System for Award Management (SAM) registration is encouraged, but not required.
  • Cost sharing/matching is not required.
  • CFVI is committed to equitable grantmaking, and will consider geographic diversity and the importance of reaching underrepresented communities in its funding decisions.
Period of Performance 

The period of performance may begin November 30, 2021 and must end on or before December 31, 2022.
Eligibility

Eligible organizations must be:

  • A U.S. nonprofit organization with 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, in good standing with the Internal Revenue Service (check your organization’s IRS status here); accredited public and 501(c)(3) institutions of higher education; state and local governmental agencies, and federally recognized Native American tribal governments. 
  • Non-public organizations or groups must be constituted for nonprofit purposes, and donations to them must be deductible under Section 170(c) of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. § 170(c)). It is not necessary that such organizations or groups be incorporated or have tax-exempt status.
  • Examples of eligible humanities organizations include, but are not limited to, museums, archives, libraries, colleges, universities, and public television stations
  • A provider of humanities programming to the general public as a significant part of its mission. (See examples of humanities here or listed below*).
  • Physically located in the USVI and has USVI residents as its primary audience.

The following are NOT eligible to apply:

  • Nonprofit organizations without 501(c)(3) seeking to use a fiscal sponsor 
  • Fiscal sponsors
  • For-profit organizations
  • Political or advocacy organizations
  • Foreign entities
  • Individuals

Funds may NOT be used for the following purposes:

  • unallowable expenses as defined in 2 CFR 200 Subpart E - Cost Principles;
  • overlapping project costs with any other pending or approved application(s) for federal funding and/or approved federal awards;
  • funds for activities supported by other non-NEH federal funds;
  • competitive regranting;
  • cancellation costs;
  • pre-award costs prior to March 15, 2021;
  • equipment costs in excess of 20 percent of total project costs;
  • travel (both foreign and domestic);
  • construction, purchase of real property, major alteration and renovation;
  • environmental sustainability;
  • collections acquisition;
  • the preservation, organization, or description of materials that are not regularly accessible for research, education, or public programming;
  • promotion of a particular political, religious, or ideological point of view;
  • advocacy of a particular program of social or political action;
  • support of specific public policies or legislation;
  • lobbying
Application & Evaluation Process

  • Applications must be submitted using the application in CFVI’s online grant portal. All returning applicants should log in using their previously created account. All new applicants must create a new account.
  • You may preview the application form for organizations here
  • Applications will be received (and reviewed on a rolling basis) beginning August 16th, 2021.
  • Applications must be submitted by 11:59 pm AST September 30, 2021. 
  • The grant portal will not accept applications after the deadline. Once the application has been submitted, an automatic email receipt will be sent confirming that all application materials were successfully received. 
  • Applicants will be notified regarding decisions on or before November 30, 2021. 
  • All awards will be publicly announced via the CFVI website and circulated to local news media. 
  • Applications will be reviewed by a committee of individuals familiar with the humanities, nonprofit grantmaking, and/or Virgin Islands history and culture. 
Evaluation Criteria

Applications will be reviewed based on the following criteria:
  1. Alignment with the primary purpose of ARP funding - to prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from the coronavirus.
  2. The importance of the entity as a provider of humanities programming 
  3. The importance of the proposed humanities activities to the applicant’s mission, to the cultural sector, and/or to the general public; and the feasibility of successfully completing the proposed activities within the period of performance.
  4. The experience and qualifications of the project team.  
  5. The integration of humanities advisers or scholars in the project.
  6. The accessibility and appeal of the project to the intended audience. 
  7. Overall evaluation of the quality of the project as a whole. 
  8. The importance/significance of the project to the USVI. 

CFVI staff will review applications for eligibility and completeness. CFVI staff and peer reviewers will evaluate all eligible and complete applications. Peer reviewers are experts in the field with relevant knowledge and expertise to evaluate the types of projects identified in the applications. CFVI and peer reviewers will evaluate applications according to the evaluation criteria outlined above. 

This process may be updated or amended to reflect changing circumstances. For the most up-to-date version, visit cfvi.net/grants-scholarships/grants/.

Note: Applications from organizations with past due reports owed to CFVI will not be considered. 
Contact

Applicants with additional questions are encouraged to contact Beth Nuttall at bethn@cfvi.net.
About the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands
Since 1990, the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands (CFVI) has been a catalyst for positive change in the territory through initiatives committed to youth, learning, family support and the environment. With a professional staff and a volunteer Board of Directors composed of community leaders, CFVI is a trusted advocate and supporter of programs that ensure opportunity and sustainability for current and future generations. CFVI is a registered non-profit organization entirely supported by individual donors, grants, trusts, corporate donations and estate planning. For more information, visit cfvi.net.
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