NJCH: COVID-19 Response - Program Support

New Jersey Council for the Humanities

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Next deadline: Oct 8, 2021 (Letter of inquiry)

Later deadlines: Oct 15, 2021 (Full proposal)

Grant amount: US $2,000 - US $20,000

Fields of work: Humanities & Social Science

Applicant type: Government Entity, Nonprofit

Funding uses: Project / Program

Location of project: New Jersey

Location of residency: New Jersey

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NOTE: To make funding as accessible as possible, COVID-19 Response Grants will have multiple deadlines throughout the summer and into the early fall. Applicants may submit their grant application at any point throughout the process; applications will be reviewed at the next deadline after which they have been submitted. Applicants will receive notification approximately two to three weeks after each due date. Any applicant who does not receive an award may edit and resubmit their application at a later due date. After the last due date, any organization that has not yet received funding through the COVID-19 Response Grant will be re-evaluated a final time. Applicants may apply for only one type of COVID-19 Response Grant.


We don’t often think of the humanities as our best hope for building a better future, but that’s exactly what they are. They allow us to break free from the limitations of our individual experience and to see both the perspectives of others as well as the larger social forces that affect us all. They provide opportunities to make history relevant and encourage diverse audiences to reflect on the shared human experience.

We often encounter the humanities as part of our formal education. They include familiar disciplines such as history, literature, and philosophy, as well as those less common (jurisprudence, we’re thinking of you!). But it's the public humanities which take these subjects out of the classroom to ensure that the critical thinking and reflection that accompanies the humanities is accessible to wide and diverse audiences. The public humanities programing offered by cultural institutions like NJCH, are typically, associated with four foundational areas: history, values, cultures and beliefs.

Our grants fund the development of meaningful humanities projects for New Jersey audiences. The most competitive projects demonstrate an awareness of the needs and interests of your audience and offer an opportunity for community members to explore history, culture, values, and beliefs.

COVID-19 Response - Program Support

NJCH is honored to once again provide support for New Jersey humanities organizations and programs through our COVID-19 Response Grants. NJCH has made these funds available for nonprofit organizations that provide humanities programming to public audiences to prepare for, respond to, and recover from the pandemic.

Program Support grants ($2,000-$20,000) are available for nonprofit and governmental organizations who undertake humanities programs, whether or not their organization's primary mission is based in the humanities. There is no matching or cost share requirement tied to these funds.

The humanities help us to analyze our complex society and make thoughtful decisions based on inquiry, evaluation, and empathy. They can help us to think critically about activities and issues of importance to communities, offer historical and cultural perspective, and broaden our thinking. Humanities fields include (but are not limited to) anthropology, archaeology, area studies, art and architectural history and criticism, cultural studies, economics, ethics, ethnic studies, folklore, gender and sexuality studies, geography, history, history of science and technology, international studies, jurisprudence, languages and linguistics, literature, music history and criticism, philosophy, political science, religion and comparative religion, sociology, theater history and criticism.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Any nonprofit institution or agency; department of state or local government; or accredited public and 501c3 educational institutions based in New Jersey that undertakes public humanities programs, whether or not the organization’s primary mission is based in the humanities, is eligible to apply for a Program Support grant.
  • These grants will allow organizations to continue existing or launch new public humanities work, to re-format humanities work for different modalities or new technologies, or to support organizational and staff capacity building for programs in the public humanities.
  • All expenses related to the grant must be incurred during the grant period.
  • To be eligible for funding, the applicant organization must be doing work in the public humanities.
    • The humanities examine our history, cultures, values, and beliefs.
    • The public humanities take these ideas out of classrooms to engage broad public audiences in that examination.
  • All Program Support grant funds must be used for expenses associated with the humanities program(s) featured in the application.
    • This is particularly important for applicants to keep in mind when determining what organizational expenses (such as staff costs or overhead) can be included in your request.
    • All expenses must be humanities program related.
  • This grants can support humanities organizations and programs by planning for the future and beginning the long process of response and recovery to the pandemic.
    • These awards may support:
      • Staff and operational costs associated with humanities programs (extant and new).
      • Contract or temporary labor for humanities programs.
      • Planning and development of new humanities programs, or re-imagining or revision of existing programs.
      • Technical or consulting needs related to digital transition or access.
      • Expansion of outdoor and/or virtual activities and increase in access to those activities for target populations.
      • Strategic planning or capacity building activities related to coronavirus impacts.


  • Priority will be given to organizations with a track record of engaging the public, particularly traditionally underserved and underrepresented audiences, in the humanities.


  • Institutions that are not eligible for this type of grant include:
    • For-profit businesses.
    • Foreign entities.
    • Individuals.
  • Applicants may not apply for a COVID-19 Response Grant with a fiscal sponsor.
  • Per the National Endowment for the Humanities, funds may not be used for the following:
    • Work outside of the humanities and the humanistic social sciences (including the creation or performance of art; creative writing, autobiographies, memoirs, and creative nonfiction; and quantitative social science research or policy studies).
    • Overlapping project costs with any other pending or approved application for federal funding and/or approved federal awards, including an open NJCH Incubation or Action Grant.
    • Funds for activities supported by other non-NEH federal funds.
    • Equipment costs in excess of 20% of total project costs.
    • Collections acquisitions (archival or material culture).
    • Re-grants, prizes, awards, or scholarships.
    • Travel (both foreign and domestic).
    • The preservation, organization, or description of materials that are not regularly accessible for research, education, or public programming.
    • Contributions to endowment.
    • Cancellation costs.
    • Lobbying.
    • 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.
    • Purchase of land or facilities, capital projects, construction, or major alteration or renovation.
    • Environmental sustainability.
    • Unallowable expenses as defined in 2 CFR 200 Subpart E – Cost principles.


This page was last reviewed August 16, 2021 and last updated August 16, 2021