September 15, 2021 Connecting Communities Digital Initiative Announces Three New Grant Opportunities

Initiative to Sponsor Digital Projects that Amplify Stories of Communities of Color

Press Contact: Leah Knobel, lknobel@loc.gov | Kelley McNabb, kmcnabb@loc.gov
Public Contact: Laurie Allen, ccdi@loc.gov

Applications are now being accepted for the higher education and library, archives, and museums grants.

Individuals and educational and cultural institutions who seek to amplify the stories of communities of color are invited to apply to new grant opportunities through the Of the People: Widening the Path Connecting Communities Digital Initiative at the Library of Congress.

Of the People is a new, multi-part initiative funded by a $15 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to enable the Library to connect more deeply with Black, Indigenous, and other communities of color. The Connecting Communities Digital Initiative (CCDI) will examine the ways technology can enable storytelling and expose more people to the Library’s expansive collections.

The funding opportunities announced today include a program for an artist or scholar in residence, a higher education grant and a library, archives, and museums grant. The award amounts range from $50,000 to $150,000. The higher education and library, archives, and museums grant applications are now open and will be accepted through Nov. 14. Artist or Scholar in Residence applications will be accepted from Sept. 22 to Nov. 21.

The Library recently announced the appointment of nine experts in technology, cultural memory, libraries and archives to the advisory board for the Connecting Communities Digital Initiative.

Interested applicants are invited to attend informational webinars on the grant opportunities. Please find more details below.

Higher Education grant: In support of the Library’s Digital Strategy, this program will offer grants to support students, faculty and staff in two-year and four-year higher education institutions that primarily serve communities of color. The grants will support the creation or maintenance of community stories in digital formats, where those stories would benefit from inclusion of Library collections. The Library will award one grant for up to $60,000 to a higher education institution to support the development of a digital interface, publication, exhibit or experimental approaches to integrating Library collections in a course, program, or interest group that will make use of the product for educational purposes at the institution.
For more on the grant and to register for informational webinars, click here.

Library, Archives and Museums grant: The grant will support local cultural heritage organizations by enabling storytelling across a range of platforms. Specifically, the Library seeks to award up to $60,000 to a library, archive or museum to support the design and implementation of digital projects (digital exhibits, interfaces, multimedia productions or publications) that use digital materials from the Library of Congress to engage Black, Indigenous or other community members of color.
For more on the grant and to register for informational webinars, click here.

Artist or Scholar in Residence program: The program will fund an Artist in Residence or Scholar in Residence for two years starting in 2021, 2022 and 2023. Each Artist/Scholar in Residence will be supported with $50,000 during the first year and $100,000 in the second year of the residency. Applicants should be artists or scholars whose work connects with the intersection of technology and cultural heritage, and engages with the legacies of racial division in the U.S. Proposed projects will help the Library and the American people imagine new ways of preserving, accessing and sharing the stories of underserved communities, connecting the nation’s past to its future.
For more on the program and to register for informational webinars, click here.

About Of the People: Widening the Path
Launched in January 2021, Of the People: Widening the Path is a multiyear initiative to connect the Library more deeply with Black, Indigenous and communities of color traditionally underrepresented in the Library’s collections. Funded through a gift from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, it provides new opportunities for more Americans to engage with the Library and add their perspectives to the Library’s collections. This work will expand the Library’s efforts to ensure that a diversity of experiences is reflected in our historical record and inform how we use those materials to understand our past.

About the Library
The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States — and extensive materials from around the world — both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office.  Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov, access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

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PR 21-055
2021-09-15
ISSN 0731-3527